Transfer on Death Deed
A transfer on death deed (“TOD”) is a legal document that allows a person to leave their property to a designated beneficiary upon their death. This can be a useful tool for estate planning, as it eliminates the need for a living trust. The TOD deed is considered a non-probate transfer under Division 5 of the California Probate Code.
If you are considering using a TOD deed to transfer your property, it is important to understand how they work and what the requirements are. This article will provide an overview of TOD deeds in California, including how to create one and what you need to know before doing so.
Why Is It Important?
A TOD deed is a useful estate planning tool because it allows you to transfer your property to a designated beneficiary without having to go through the probate process. This can be helpful if you want to avoid the costs and delays associated with probate.
What Are the Requirements?
In order to create a TOD deed, you must meet the following requirements:
- The property must be located in California.
- The designated beneficiary must be a family member, friend, life-long partner or other loved one.
- The property cannot be subject to a mortgage or other security interest.
- The property cannot be transferred to a trust.
- The property cannot be subject to pending legal action.
How Do I Create a TOD Deed?
In order to create a TOD deed, you will need to draft a document that includes the following information:
- The name of the designated beneficiary.
- The name of the deceased.
- The legal description of the property.
- The signature of the deceased.
- The signature of the designated beneficiary.
Once you have drafted the document, you will need to have it notarized and recorded with the county recorder’s office.
What Should I Know Before Creating a TOD Deed?
There are a few things to keep in mind before creating a TOD deed:
A TOD deed is revocable, meaning that you can change your mind about the beneficiary at any time.
If you sell the property after creating the deed, the deed will be void and the new owner will not be subject to it.
Once you create a TOD deed, the property cannot be transferred to a trust.
The designated beneficiary will become the owner of the property upon your death.
If you have any questions about TOD deeds, please contact an experienced estate planning attorney.