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She’s wasn’t dead yet, but that didn’t stop a bank from trying to foreclosing on her home

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

In a real life line from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Tampa resident Susan Carol Fernandez literally had to proclaim to a bank that she’s not dead yet (though it’s unclear whether Fernandez has a British accent.)

The 71-year old nurse at Achieve Home Care and her husband, Allen Fernandez, took out a reverse mortgage on their home in 2007. He died in 2011. Two years after the fact the mortgage company, Nationstar, foreclosed on the house. According to a lawsuit filed in Hillsborough County Court, Fernandez claims it was because they thought she had died too.

Fernandez allegedly informed Nationstar that not only was she not dead, she was also still residing in the home. The company proceeded with the foreclosure process anyway until finally dismissing it last October.

Fernandez is suing the company for damages claiming she suffered increased stress, excess frustration and anger, “fits of crying” and sleepless nights throughout the ordeal.

Now Fernandez seems every bit as sympathetic as the old man in the opening scene of Monty Python and the Holy Grail thrown over the shoulder of some man trying to toss him out with the dead, but things may not be quite so simple.

Digging into some background uncovers some potential hiccups in Fernandez’s “I’m not dead yet” lawsuit. First, the Tampa home in question was deeded to her husband only and he was listed as a single man in 1998. Allen Fernandez’s obituary claims they were married in 1966, but court documents show them married in 2000.

Then, in 2008, after Fernandez’s lawsuit claims the reverse mortgage was obtained, the home was deeded to both husband and wife as well as the Fernandez Family Trust. The inconsistency of Susan Fernandez’s name on mortgage documents could raise questions.

According to Allen Fernandez’s obituary, he is survived by not only his wife, but also four children and nine grandchildren.

Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email

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