A special type of deed that can be used in a growing number of states to transfer ownership of real estate outside of probate to the beneficiaries named in the deed.
In some states a sworn affidavit instead of a deed is required to designate the transfer on death beneficiaries.
As of January 1, 2013, the following states recognize transfer on death deeds or beneficiary deeds in their state statutes:
- District of Columbia
- New Mexico
- North Dakota
At least three states - Florida, Michigan and Texas - recognize an "enhanced life estate deed," also referred to as a "Lady Bird Deed," under state common law, not by state statute. Therefore, in these states, an enhanced life estate deed functions in a manner similar to a transfer on death deed.
NOTE: State laws change frequently and the information above may not reflect recent changes in the laws. For current tax or legal advice, please consult with an accountant or an attorney since the information contained in this article is not tax or legal advice and is not a substitute for tax or legal advice.