House Representative

Giddings, Helen

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 05/25/2015

Giddings Passes Mortgage Disclosure Bill out of Both Houses

Austin - Representative Helen Giddings (Dallas) successfully passed House Bill 831 out of the Senate Chamber last week. HB 831 will require a mortgage servicer to disclose basic information to the surviving spouse about the home mortgage held solely in the name of the deceased spouse, as long as the surviving spouse submits certain documentation.

"This issue was brought to our attention by one of my constituents, Ms. Thelma Clardy, who is a local attorney. She explained that many of her surviving spouse-clients have faced road blocks when trying to get even the most basic information about the mortgage that was held solely in the name of their deceased spouse. The only way for these surviving spouses to obtain this information was to initiate a formal probate administration or an heirship determination," Giddings explained. "Furthermore," Giddings said, "we learned that these types of judicial procedures can be costly and time consuming, and agreed with Ms. Clardy that there should be another avenue to safely obtain this information."

Should a surviving spouse need to obtain information about the mortgage held solely in the name of the deceased spouse, under HB 831, they will need to submit: a death certificate of the deceased spouse/mortgagor, an affidavit of a disinterested witness regarding the marriage relationship of the surviving spouse to the deceased spouse at time of death, an affidavit from the surviving spouse that they are currently residing in the mortgaged property, and specific language that clearly states that this new law does not conflict with federal law. Once this information has been provided to the mortgage servicer, they will have 30 days from the date they received the request to supply the basic mortgage information to the surviving spouse. This information includes the basic information that the mortgagor would have received in a standard monthly statement.

"This bill will help the surviving spouse, in this specific situation, to get the information they need to make an informed decision about how to move forward after their spouse has passed away," Giddings emphasized.

Representative Helen Giddings proudly serves the cities of House District 109: Dallas, DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Glenn Heights Hutchins, Lancaster, Wilmer, as well as part of Duncanville.


Contact: Carnell Emanuel