if my father died and my house is in his name still but he gave me the house how do i transfer the deed to my name

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if my father died and my house is in his name still but he gave me the house how do i transfer the deed to my name

my father passed a few years ago but before he died he gave me the house i live in now. the property taxes are about 4years behind and im about to lose my house. how can i transfer the deed to my name.

Asked on August 9, 2017 under Estate Planning, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If the house was never put in your name (the deed was not placed in your name), your father never actually gave the house to you: he may have intended to or wanted to, but he did not. Now that he passed, his wishes, unless they are expressed in a valid written will are irrelevant. If you are inheriting the house under a will, or are his only living child (and there is no living spouse) so you will inherit the house through "intestate succession" (the rules who gets what when there is no will), you would ultimately inherit, but only *after* the home goes through probate. In the meantime, you'd need be appointed the executor (if named executor by a will) or the administrator/personal executor (if no will) by the court, to have the legal authority to do things relating to the house (and the rest of your father's "estate," or what he left behind). You can contract the probate court to get information about this.
Also, regardless of who owns the home, if the property taxes have not been paid, it can be foreclosed upon--there is no defense to nonpayment of property taxes other than paying them. So if you can pay the taxes, either all at once or at least in a reasonable time, contact the tax authorites to try to make arrangements to do so; if you can't, they will take the home.
 


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