Irving Transfer on Death Deeds Attorney

Dallas County Death Deed Transfers Lawyer

Dallas County Lawyer for Transferring Real Estate Property While Avoiding Probate

When a person dies, the property that they leave behind is generally known as their "estate." The assets of the person's estate are often transferred to chosen heirs through instructions left in the person's will. Before the named heirs can take possession of their inheritances, however, the estate will usually need to go through legal process called "probate." During probate, the court will verify the validity of the person's will, as well as the property of the estate and the existence of the named heirs. Depending on the circumstances, probate can be a lengthy and expensive process—sometimes leaving very few assets left in the estate when all is said and done.

At Andrew Dunlap Attorneys, PLLC, we are adept at helping clients in North Texas find ways to legally avoid probate when transferring property to their intended heirs. Doing so can save significant time, money, and stress for everyone involved. One such method for avoiding probate is by using Transfer on Death Deeds (TODD) to control the transfer of real estate holdings.

Understanding Transfer on Death Deeds

Transfer on Death Deeds became available in Texas in 2016, and they apply to real estate property. Specifically, a TODD is a deed created in writing by the owner of a property and recorded in the county of which the property is located, and it names the individual or individuals to whom the property will pass on to upon the death of the property owner. Having a Transfer on Death Deed can help avoid the probate process and streamline the transfer of property upon one's death.

A Transfer on Death Deed allows the property owner to continue to keep all ownership rights to their property during their lifetime. Once the property owner dies, the person or persons named in the TODD will receive the property. More than one person can be named, and changes to the beneficiaries can be made at any time without their involvement.

What Is Required for a Valid Transfer on Death Deed?

Transfer on Death Deeds can address land, homes, buildings, uncut timber, and mineral rights. They must be signed, notarized, and recorded in the county where the property is located before the owner dies. A beneficiary may be a person, organization, institution, charity, or trust, among other entities. It is important to note that the property does need not be paid off to be transferred to a beneficiary using a TODD. However, all liens, mortgages, and judgments, as well as claims of other creditors, may be applied against the property. Mortgages, liens, and notes follow the property and will become the responsibility of the new owner.

For a Transfer of Death Deed to be valid and enforceable, it must:

  • Be in writing
  • Contain a legal description of the property
  • Include the name and address of each beneficiary
  • Explicitly state that the transfer of property will not occur until the owner's death
  • Be created during the owner's lifetime and recorded in the county where the property is located

It is a good idea to have a Transfer of Death Deed as part of your estate plan, even if you have a will. In the event that a person's will and Transfer of Death Deed do not list the same beneficiary for the same property, the provisions of the Transfer of Death Deed will supersede those in the will.

Contact a North Texas TODD Attorney

For more information about using Transfer on Death Deeds as part of your comprehensive estate plan, contact the office of Andrew Dunlap Attorneys, PLLC at 972-807-6357. We will help you make the best possible decisions for yourself and your loved ones and give you the security and peace of mind that you deserve.

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