Many things can cause problems with your title, and if a past owner of your home is deceased, problems related to their will can surface and cause you headaches. We look for these issues when we do the title search for your purchase, but as you know, not everything will come up in that search. That’s why we always recommend that you buy title insurance!
Here are a few of the ways a person’s will can cause you problems.
Errors: If a deceased owner’s will wasn’t executed correctly or was misinterpreted, that error could come back to cause problems later. A relative or heir could say that a new interpretation of the will gives them an interest in your property.
More than one will: During the course of their life, a person may have created more than one version of their will or updated it along the way. If an older version was executed before the newest one was found, someone could claim an interest in your property based on the new will.
Missing heirs: When a will is executed, every effort is made to find the heirs so that they can claim what has been left to them by the deceased person. Sometimes those heirs cannot be found for a variety of reasons. If they surface many years later claiming and interest in your home, title insurance can protect you.
The will is found at a later date: When someone dies without a will, the state takes over how property is distributed after the person’s debts have been repaid. Sometimes, a will is discovered after this process is complete. Someone named as a beneficiary in the will could claim an interest in your property based on that document.
If you’re buying a home with a deceased owner, don’t worry! We can help you through the process and explain the details to you. Contact Foote Title Group today if you’ve got questions.