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Can I safely let a house go into foreclosure that was under a deceased person's name and underwater?

Phoenix, AZ |

In Arizona, can I let a home go into foreclosure that I was supposed to inherit if it is underwater and I do not want to take it on? Can the lender come after any assets of the estate?

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Attorney answers 3


Assuming you are in Arizona and the property qualifies for anti- deficiency protection, then yes, that is certainly a viable option. If there are any non-purchase money loans, it will be important to assess how those might impact assets remaining in the estate.

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you as the beneficiary do not have to take an inheritance. consult a probate lawyer to discuss the method of disclaiming your interest. it will then go to the residuary clause if there is a will. if not it will go as directed by intestate laws in the state of the deceased residence.the lawyer who handles the probate of the estate can advise to what extent the bank can pursue assets of the estate. in most instances the bank would be required to obtain a deficiency judgment and comply with the rules related to filing claims against the estate. by consulting a probate lawyer he can give you specific answers as he will have a will to review or be able to advise you based upon the statutory laws of descent and distribution

without a detailed review by a lawyer can all the issues raised in your question be appropriately addressed...nothing in this response should be construed as establishing a lawyer client relationship..the answers herein are for informational purposes and not to be construed as advice


I agree with Robert. The critical question is whether or not the lender has the right to pursue any type of deficiency following the sale. If not, then you have nothing to be concerned about. If they do, then there may be some risk to the assets of the estate, if any. Another thing to keep in mind is liability for damage or injuries occurring on the property BEFORE the sale occurs. Insurance can take care of that portion if done right. A final consideration is HOA fees. If the home is in an HOA, there is some risk there is the grounds are not maintained or the fees go unpaid.

Douglas Edmunds is in the business of helping people and companies file for bankruptcy protection. The bankruptcy code requires that I call my firm a "debt relief agency." Any answers or information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be a legal opinion, legal advice or a complete discussion of the legal issues. This is not intended to create a attorney-client relationship. Each individual's situation is different and you should seek independent legal advice from an attorney familiar with the laws of your state for specific information.