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life estate: could the deed be conveyed without recognizing the letter of intent?

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  • life estate: could the deed be conveyed without recognizing the letter of intent?

    In 1990 my recently deceased wife had her then mother-in-law deed to her a home along with a "life estate". The older woman was subsequently admitted to a nursing home for the remainder of her life. At the time of the admittance, the county placed a value on the life estate of $42,000. At the same time a "letter of intent" to file a lien was filed with the county clerk. Now that my wife has died the house is in the estate, and left to my stepson who is executor. My questions: Inasmuch as no lien as yet has been effected, can the property be conveyed to me from my stepson without the lien being imposed. I am willing to buy the property subject to the lien. Might the lien be interest bearing? It is my wish of course, to purchase the property without the significant financial imposition of the lien. Might the lien be negotiable? Could the deed be conveyed without recognizing the letter of intent? A cloud on the title doesn't particularly frighten me. Thank you for your anticipated input.---John Berigan

  • #2
    re: life estate: could the deed be conveyed without recognizing the letter of intent?

    Have a title company do a search and see what if anything has actually been filed--it may be that it is free and clear.

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