Is a party responsible for their portion of the mortgage if their name is on the loan?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Is a party responsible for their portion of the mortgage if their name is on the loan?

My mom and I purchased a home together last year. She now is getting remarried
and is moving out at the end of the month. Is she still legally responsible for
her portion of the mortgage since her name is on the loan?

Asked on September 5, 2017 under Real Estate Law, New York


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes and no. Yes in the sense that if she does not pay her share, the other mortgagors (i.e. you) could sue her for her share. No, in that the 1) the bank does not come after her for her share--the bank holds each of you liable for the whole amount, only cares that it gets the whole amount each month, and does not care about how you internally split it up; and 2) if the whole amount (not just your share) is not paid, the home can be foreclosed on. So yes, you can hold her accountable for her share, but *you* have to do, via a lawsuit if necessary; the bank does not enforce the division of the payments for you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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