Almost 4 years ago my husband and I purchased a home in a small coastal town of Massachusetts. We were more than able to purchase a home on our own as it was the 3rd house we had bought since being married. Each time we sold a house we made more money to put down as a down payment for the next one.... My mother and father began to ask if they could come on board with us with the intention of building an in-law apt. onto whatever house we decided to buy. At first I poo pooed the idea as I thought my mother was just in one of her phases of coming up with ideas ... I might add this happened one other time different situation with a past boyfriend of 7 years ( We at the time thought we were serious about marriage... Well that ended in a disaster and an obvious breaking up of our relationship. I should have known that history sometimes has a funny way of repeating itself. Well back to the current situation. Well my husband and I finally agreed to let them come on board. (2nd mistake)We did howver aske them to help with the portion of the downpayment .. The house had a two car garage that we decided would be converted as part of their in-law apt. So we came up with a comparable figure based on what we felt the garage was worth. This was a new home. We did receive some of the money before closing, but they never paid us 10,000 (3rd mistake) We would not have purchased this home in the first place at is was out of our price range but went along with my mother.(4th mistake) Well fast forward they built there in-law for which they paid for as that was the agreement and have now lived here almost 2 years. Since that time our relationship has deterioated (mother) and we no longer talk. A long story but in a nut shell she is a very controlling woman that has always gotten her way. I refuse to play her games anymore. We received a summons last week for an outstanding portion that she never paid the builder of her apt. I advised her 1 year ago that the builder recorded a lien on our property and she needed to take care of it. She never did. The house is in my husband and my name only. (thank god, She wanted it to be joint tennacy but I said no. She had more that enough time to back out of deal as I told her she did not have to do this and to way all her options before proceeding. We drew up a letter and asked her to respond to this summons. The summons said we had 20 days to respond with an answer. We received a letter back from her attorney stating that they were compiling a response, but we should seek counsel as well?? I also asked in that letter for back taxes of the last 2 years (her portion) as she had agreed that she would pay a portion. Taxes on this property run 7500 a year (approx) I felt one third from this year only would suffice. Forget about last year. What legal recourse do I have to make this go away. She does not have any ownership in the property. I don't want to just sell this house from under her, even though she has 2 other homes she could live in. Some advise would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for my long winded entry.