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Hammerle: Transfer on Death Deed

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Virginia N. Hammerle
Virginia N. Hammerle

The Texas Legislature got really busy this last go-around and authorized a brand new document:  the Transfer on Death Deed.

The purpose is to transfer an individual’s interest in real property to one or more beneficiaries.  The transfer is effective at the transferor’s death.

The law only applies to deeds signed after September 1, 2015, and to people who die after September 1, 2015.  To be effective, the deed has to be recorded in the deed records of the county where the property is located.  The deed has to be recorded before the transferor dies.

The deed doesn’t erase mortgages or liens against the property.  Although the property isn’t considered part of the transferor’s probate estate, a probate creditor can still reach the property to satisfy an unpaid debt.

There are a lot of interesting provisions in the new law.  For example, the transferor doesn’t have to tell a beneficiary about the deed.  The beneficiary doesn’t have to accept the deed during the transferor’s life.  Unlike most real estate transactions, a Transfer on Death Deed doesn’t require consideration.

Even more interesting – while the transferor can revoke the Transfer on Death Deed during his lifetime, he can’t revoke or supersede it in his Will.

We’ll have to wait to see how this document plays out in court.  In the meantime – it is another interesting estate planning tool that could prove to be very useful.

Hammerle Finley Law Firm. Give us a call. We can help.

Virginia Hammerle is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization and an Accredited Estate Planner by the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils. She can be contacted at legaltalktexas@hammerle.com. The information contained in this article is general information only and does not constitute legal advice. ©2015

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