Scammed into signing over house

OK, before I even start I will point out how idiotic this situation is, but hey it's happened.

Our neighbours mother has signed over her house to "a long time friend" who went and mortgaged the house, and then declared bankrupt. As a result, the bank is knocking on the door, and given notice to repo the house.

Yeah it sounds a little unbelievable doesn't it. Supposedly the fraudster befriended the old dear, and promises to sell the house for her giving her 450k. The old dear fell for it, and has now lost everything. The fraudster did all the paper work, and the old dear just signed her life away.\

So, question is. Does the old dear have any chance of keeping her house?
 
That's terrible!

I have no idea what is likely to happen but can only suggest getting very good legal advice quickly. My initial gut feel would be that there is no recourse here. Even if she could establish it was theft and she should be able to claim back against this fraudster, they've already declared bankruptcy so there's nothing to get back.

The bank has a legal claim against the property now so will pursue their rights.

The only out would be to find some legal way to demonstrate that the signing over was improper and has no legal standing. Hence the need for an expert in contract law to assist with a review of the signing over. However, if it is all legal and above board, and can't be declared void due to mental state or duress etc then she has a real problem.

For an out, you'd need the following:

1. The signing over needs to be declared invalid and not legally sustainable.
2. This might need a good contract lawyer to argue diminished mental state due to age etc.

If you can do that, then a court would declare the signing over invalid and therefore the mortgage invalid and the banks claim unsupportable. But its a stretch.

Lawyers, good ones, quickly...

Cheers,
Michael
 
Actually there is a fund established by the titles office to cater for cases like this where fraud is involved. That is where she can seek compensation.
 
Actually there is a fund established by the titles office to cater for cases like this where fraud is involved. That is where she can seek compensation.

True, but I think it will only cover cases where the signature is faked. If an undue influence case you may have to litigate.

I would consider caveating the property and seeing a solicitor asap.

She can get free legal help at seniors legal and support service ph 4031 7358 or a community legal service like caxton ph32146333.

PM me the address I'll have a quick look at it if it is on the southside.
 
BTW this sort of thing happens regularly. There is even a case of a solicitor who was infatuated with a woman and gave her everything including all his proeprty
 
BTW this sort of thing happens regularly. There is even a case of a solicitor who was infatuated with a woman and gave her everything including all his proeprty

Jeez. Did this solicitor get any professional sanctions against them?

You should get struck off the roll for that sort of stupidity/gullibility - even if its in a personal capacity.
 
Terrible

Unfortunately happens regularly.

Lawyer needed straight away.

Agree with others, probably litigation needed to resolve.

Witnessing of mortgage documents may be a key point. Any idea who witnessed her signature on the mortgage docs?

D
 
Terrible

Unfortunately happens regularly.

Lawyer needed straight away.

Agree with others, probably litigation needed to resolve.

Witnessing of mortgage documents may be a key point. Any idea who witnessed her signature on the mortgage docs?

D

Yes that's exactly what I was thinking myself. Who witnessed the signature?!?! I will find out.
 
MORE INFORMATION:

As it turns out, the signing over of the property happened 12 months ago, and it is only now the old dear found out there was a problem as the bank came knocking on the door.
 
Yeah she was manipulated to the point she was told "don't tell your kids about this" by the scammer.

It is sad that some people are so trusting, but there are complete a-holes out there.
 
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