The term encumbrance refers to a legal claim, Lien, or liability attached to a property or Asset which limits its ownership or transfer.

An encumbrance can have an impact on the property's value, use, or transferability. It is a term commonly used in real estate and financial contexts to describe any restriction, obligation, or burden that might affect the property or asset's ownership rights.

After a death, encumbrance refers to any legal claim or Debt attached to the deceased's Estate which can impact its distribution to Heirs or Beneficiaries.

These encumbrances can be debts, outstanding loans, mortgages, property taxes, unpaid utility bills, or any other financial obligation the deceased may have had during their lifetime.

Encumbrances associated with a deceased person's estate can affect the overall value of the estate and how it is managed during the Probate process. Because the deceased's debt must be paid prior to distributing remaining assets, an encumbrance may prevent the Surviving Family from benefiting from the deceased's estate.

It's best to speak with an Estate Attorney or Probate Attorney if this is the case.