How do I change a deed?
Unfortunately, changing your title is somewhat more complicated with the government offices than it might seem it
should be. In order to add or remove a name on the title, a new deed needs to be prepared and recorded in the land records.
How do I add someone to a deed?A new deed needs to be prepared. The current owners of the property will need to sign the deed and have their signatures notarized. The original notarized deed then needs to be recorded in the land records in the jurisdiction where the property is located.
How do I remove someone from a deed?A new deed needs to be prepared. The current owners of the property will need to sign the deed and have their signatures notarized. You cannot remove anyone from a deed, unless the party being removed executes the deed. Note that in extreme examples, a court proceeding can be instituted and the person's name can be removed by court order. The original notarized deed then needs to be recorded in the land records in the jurisdiction where the property is located.
Did you purchase the property jointly with your spouse prior to your marriage?If this is your situation, you should consider changing your deed to reflect the title is changed to Tenants by the Entireties. Your deed does not automatically convert to Tenants by the Entireties simply because you got married.
Did the other person on the deed pass away and the deceased person's name remains on the deed?Assuming the prior deed was either Joint Tenancy (and the joint tenancy has not been broken) or Tenants by the Entireties, normally it is not necessary to change the deed. At the time of sale of the property, you will be asked to present a death certificate for the deceased property owner. However, if you were tenants in common on the prior deed, you will need to have the deed changed.
Will I have to pay transfer taxes to change my deed?Possibly, depending on the relationship between the parties being added or removed from the deed, there may be recordation or transfer taxes due in order to record your new deed. The good news is that there are various exemptions provided you prepare the deed correctly to claim the exemption. We are very familiar with the available exemptions and can guide you though the process.
What are some of the transfer tax exemptions for deed changes?There are really too many to list, but some of the most common ones are below:
(i) spouse or former spouse
(ii) son, daughter, stepson, or stepdaughter
(iii) parent or stepparent
(iv) son-in-law, daughter-in-law, stepson-in-law, or stepdaughter-in-law
(v) parent-in-law or stepparent-in-law
(vi) brother, sister, stepbrother, or stepsister
(vii) grandchild or stepgrandchild
(viii) grandparent or stepgrandparent
(ix) domestic partner or former domestic partner
(Note that domestic partner can include both same sex partners and opposite sex partners)