Sometimes people quitclaim deed their home to their adult children because they want to give their house to them and think that’s a good way to avoid probate. It does avoid probate, but it’s a very bad idea for a number of reasons. The relationship with the kids could go south and the kids could literally evict the parents because they are no longer owners of the home. Also, the kids’ creditors can put a lien on the house and foreclose, forcing the parents to pay off the lien or move. A quit claim deed is non-revocable – once it’s done, it’s done.
A better solution is to do a transfer on death deed (also known as a TODD), which avoids probate, transfers the ownership of the property at death, protects the parents from ouster by the beneficiaries, protects the home from creditor claims of the beneficiaries until the transfer is complete (at death), and is fully revocable. Using a transfer on death deed, the parents can achieve their goals without exposing themselves to the risks associated with a quit claim deed.
Transfer on death deeds are appropriate for people who do not have other property that will need to go through the probate process. The most important aspect of using a TODD, though, is that it must be recorded with the county land records before death to be valid. Any revocation of a TODD also must be recorded before death. For those who use a TODD as part of their estate planning, it is important to get the document recorded right away.
To get a transfer on death deed drafted for your property, contact our office at (612) 206-3701 or through our contact form to schedule a time for us to sit down and talk.
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