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Understanding Transfer on Death Deeds in Texas

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Fort Worth estate planning attorneyIf you own property in Texas, you may be wondering what a "transfer on death deed" is and how it works. The short answer is that a transfer on death deed is a relatively simple estate planning tool that allows you to pass down real estate property to a chosen beneficiary without having the property pass through the Texas probate process. This alternative to traditional probate can save time, money, and stress for everyone involved.

What Is a Transfer on Death Deed?

A transfer on death deed (TODD) is a legal document that allows you to transfer ownership of your real estate property to someone else upon your death. The TODD does not take effect until after you die, so you can change your mind at any time and revoke the deed.

In order to create a valid TODD in Texas, you must be at least 18 years old and the owner of the property in question. The deed must clearly describe the property in question and specifically identify your chosen beneficiaries. Then, it must be signed and notarized in front of two witnesses, who must also sign the deed. The TODD must then be filed with the county clerk's office where the property is located. Once the TODD is filed, it becomes a public record.

What Are the Benefits of a TODD?

There are several benefits of using a TODD to transfer ownership of your property:

  • Avoiding Probate – As mentioned above, one of the benefits of using a TODD is that it avoids probate. Probate can be time-consuming and expensive, so if you want to make sure that your heirs can take ownership of your property as quickly and easily as possible, a TODD may be right for you.

  • Flexibility – Another benefit of a TODD is that it offers flexibility. With a TODD, you can change your mind at any time and revoke the deed. This means that if your circumstances change, or if you simply decide that you want to keep the property for yourself after all, you can do so without any hassle or inconvenience.

  • Simplicity – Unlike some other estate planning documents, such as trusts, a TODD is relatively simple to create. As long as you meet the basic requirements, you and your attorney should be able to draft a valid TODD without too much trouble.

Contact a Fort Worth Estate Planning Attorney

If you are considering drafting a transfer on death deed to control the transfer of a property that you own, contact an experienced Texas estate planning lawyer. Call 817-349-7330 for a free consultation and case review with a member of the team at Gonzalez Law, PLLC today.

Source:

https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/ES/htm/ES.114.htm

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