Can the bank take the money from will?

1 Reply

Hello BP, My wife’s sister-in law passed away last year after battling cancer for a year. She lived in Lemont, IL. Her will states that her money/ cash goes to her husband 30% and to her mother 70%. Instead of just giving them the money she wanted it to do legal way. She had about 100k saved. She and her husband (my brother-in law) had a condo which obviously he dumped it after her death since it’s way under water (owe like 235k, market value around 200k). She, also put her friend in charge of handling the will matters. So, this friend hired a lawyer for 5k ( at least initial payment) and the lawyer started all the legal process. My brother in-law now worries that bank will take all the money because they dumped the condo and mortgagor is legally cappable of simply taking the money from dead person’s account. I know that spouse or even children are responsible for any credit card or auto loans/ revolving debt. But I thought that in real estate house is the colateral and that’s the only thing bank will get because otherwise banks would always get their notes paid off when person dies. What do you guys think? Can you please advise?! Thank you!

@Tom Kairys

It has to do with how the property is owned, who signed off on the loan, and how  bank accounts were titled or vested. Most states will want probate and courts to decide. Trusts can generally avoid probate but not after one passes. Paperwork is very important. 

If the bank account is with the same bank that foreclosed they may very well take it  -if not they may get a deficiency judgment and take the $35k plus fees. Can’t be sure with info provided. 

Lesson is to get plan and attorney prior to death for those of us still here. Good luck. 

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