Although your father was required to keep records. the burden will be on the friend to show you that they made full payment. Let them show you cancelled checks or receipts prior to giving them any satisfaction ofa mortgage.
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You don't have to issue the satisfaction unless they can prove that they made payment. On the other hand, you have no documents to prove that a debt is owed, so if they sue you to clear the judgment, they will probably win.
If you'd like to discuss, please feel free to call. Jeff Gold Gold, Stewart & Benes, LLP 1854 Bellmore Ave Bellmore, NY 11710 Telephone -516.512.6333 Email - Jgold@goldstewart.com
You can get a certified copy of the mortgage, and if you're lucky, of the mortgage note, from the county clerk's office. As the other lawyers pointed out, they have to prove they paid the mortgage off. You might ask them for what paperwork they have --they should have a copy of the note and mortgage plus an amortization schedule. Be reasonable. If the mortgage should have been paid off when your stepfather was alive, or if your Mom received payments to a date consistent with the amortization schedule. You don't say if your step father's estate was probated or not. If it was, there might be something in the Surrogate's Court file to help. Also, if there was no probate or administration of your step father's estate, there would be a question as to who could sign the satisfaction of mortgage.
My answer to your question is for general purposes only and does not establish an attorney-client relationship,