Case Studies

Missing Ownership – Death of Mortgage Holder with No Succession

In a recent case, a husband and wife with numerous children owned a home subject to a mortgage. The husband passed away, and no succession was ever opened. Nevertheless, the wife refinanced the loan secured by the existing mortgage with a new loan and mortgage. By oversight the closing firm did not realize that the widow only owned a half interest in the home.


Mr. Harlan contacted the Wife and Children to obtain their assistance in resolving the matter. But they refused to cooperate. Accordingly, we resolved the issue by (i) opening the Husband’s Succession, (ii) suing the Succession through the oblique action (asserting the rights of the Wife against the Husband for contribution through the oblique action), (iii) obtaining a Judgment, and (iv) recording it to effect a judicial mortgage over the Husband’s one-half interest in the home.

See More Like This



About the Author

Hansel Harlan

Prior to forming Harlan Law Firm, Hansel worked with another Law Firm, Phelps Dunbar in the Commercial Litigation Section. Mr. Harlan had a general national commercial litigation practice with a…

Learn More