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Auto accident claim and homestead protection

I was involved in an auto accident in June of 2007. In April of 2008, I filed a declaration of homestead on my primary residence (I am fairly certain that the home is not valued at over $500k). In June of 2010 I was served with a summons, as the other party involved in the 6/2007 accident was seeking damages (personal injury/pain/lost wages....). My question is whether or not my home is protected under the Mass. homestead act, even though I filed after the date of the accident.

 
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Editor's Response

Without knowing all of the relevant facts, I can only offer this guess:  I think your home is protected.   In a 2006 case from the Massachusetts Land Court, the Court held that a prejudgment attachment that was filed before a Homestead Declaration is a valid preexisting lien that negates the Homestead protection, even when the judgment is obtained after the Homestead.  But in your case, you recorded your Homestead months after the accident, but before any lawsuit was filed (and certainly before any judgment of prejudgment attachment), presumably without knowledge that a lawsuit was in the works.

As I'm sure you are aware, your automobile insurance will also protect you in such a lawsuit.   Good luck, and for more general information, visit our Massachusetts Personal Injury Discussion Forum.

 

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