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What is a Transfer on Death Deed?

Minnesota's Transfer on Death Deed

Prior to August 1, 2008, Minnesotans who wanted to leave real estate to their loved ones after they passed away had few options: include these assets in a will and allow their homes and other real property to pass through probate, which can be an expensive and time-consuming process, or retain only a life estate in the property, which caused gifting and capital gain problems.

Fortunately, in 2008, that all changed with the passage of Minnesota's Transfer on Death Deed law. Now, it's possible to create a specific kind of deed that transfers real property directly to your heirs upon your death - without the need for probate.

What Are the Advantages of the Transfer on Death Deed?

A Minnesota Transfer on Death Deed allows a property owner to designate beneficiaries to receive his or her real estate upon his or her death. This type of deed also eliminates all the disadvantages and risks of joint tenancies and life estates, such as the possibility of an adult child unduly pressuring an incapacitated elderly parent into selling the family home against his or her wishes. The property owner retains full control and complete ownership of the property throughout his or her lifetime. A beneficiary's interest in the property doesn't spring into being until the owner has passed away.

Furthermore, if the owner decides to revoke the beneficiary's interest and name a new beneficiary, he or she can simply draft a new deed to replace the old Transfer on Death Deed.

How a Transfer on Death Deed Works

Like standard real property deeds, Transfer on Death Deeds must be properly drafted, signed, and recorded to be valid. Property owners can designate more than one beneficiary and can even name an alternate beneficiary who will inherit upon an original beneficiary's death.

Once the property owner passes away, the beneficiary or beneficiaries must record the appropriate documents, which include an affidavit of survivorship and a death certificate, with the recorder's office to transfer the property into their names.

Minnesota Estate Planning and Probate Attorneys

Transfer on Death Deeds are just one of the many estate planning documents that can provide tremendous peace of mind. Knowing your property is in good hands and your loved ones will be financially secure is an invaluable feeling. At Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC, we help individuals and families create enduring legacies. Call us today at (651) 968-1457 to learn more about protecting your assets and achieving your goals.

This website has been prepared by Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.

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Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates

Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates LLC
2356 University Avenue West, Suite 400 | St. Paul, MN 55114
Phone: 651-968-1457 Toll free: 866-442-3092
Fax: 651-647-9544
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