No constructive trust to benefit mom kicked out of house
A sad scenario: mom and adult son live together in a home owned by mom. Son took care of mom as she was in poor health. Mom sells the home and son takes the proceeds to buy a new home in Lake Jackson for them to live. Son manages to get the home in his name only. The relationship between son, his new wife, and mother deteriorated, apparently because of mom's declining health and growing demands. Son served an eviction notice on mom, hoping that she would move to an assisted-care facility that could better meet her medical needs. Mom sued son and daughter in law, asking the court to impose a constructive trust on the home for her benefit. The trial court found that mom did not intend to gift the home to son. The trial court also held that son had breached a fiduciary duty to mom and imposed a constructive trust on the home for mom's benefit. The 14th Court of Appeals reversed that decision. The problem? Mom hadn't asserted a breach of fiduciary duty claim in her petition, nor had she made reference to the son owing her a fiduciary duty. Unfortunately, mom passed away during the pendency of the appeal. It appears she may have had a viable claim for legal malpractice against her attorney.