Transfering Title to Your Home in MinnestoaWays That Someone Might Have Used to Transfer Their Home

How you go about transferring a house by through or outside of probate law may or may not be so simple. Not everyone uses their will to transfer their home even if they’re using that quintessential estate planning document as their primary way of communicating to their family and friends.

The ownership of the home could be set up in such a way that the ownership transfers almost seamlessly. As a suggestion, you may want to start checking into the will, and if the house isn’t mentioned there, it’s time to check for the three other options listed here.

Use this article as a kind of checklist to finding out what the previous homeowner used to pass on their favorite abode. In fact, this article might help you understand what things won’t need to be dealt with through probate.

Title Transfer | Wills Work

As long as the deceased’s will is legal, that can be one component that can be used towards transferring title to your home. There are plenty of ways that property can be transferred, so this shouldn’t be too much of an issue. In Minnesota, there shouldn’t be any real differences from what’s required in other states. Your real concern may lie in whether or not the will itself meets Minnesota’s standards rather than how the house shall be passed on. As long as the will checks out, everything should be pretty much set in terms of legal concerns, assuming that there are no debts.

Keep in mind that you might still need to research laws pertaining to assets that are owned by tenants in common.

That’s where things might get tricky. Since the property isn’t in a trust, presuming that the deceased didn’t leave something in both a will and a trust, it probably still needs to go through probate proceedings. That’s just a general rule regardless of what kind of property you’re dealing with, house or otherwise.

Life Estates and Minnesota Title Transfer

Though this isn’t commonly talked about in estate planning, it may have been that the deceased passed on their property as a life estate. These homes are a bit different in that the person who gave the estate, presumably the deceased, no longer legally owned the estate upon making the gift.

Think of how irrevocable trusts works, but mainly just for homes. Sure, they could have lived in the home until their death, but the recipient of their gift became the new owner. Thankfully, this kind of property should be among your least of worries since everything should be owned by the new owner already. This property avoids probate by not even being something that’s considered to be owned by the deceased. To quell their concerns, maybe bake them cookies and offer your reassurance to cheer them up.

Most likely, you won’t even have to worry about this property during probate. You might have to worry about helping maintain it, clean it, or assist in its daily upkeep, but in terms of giving it, since everything happened before the deceased passed on and since it happened outside of the probate courthouse, everything should transfer automatically.

Your big concern is making sure that the person who received the estate is actually managing without the previous owner, as maybe the deceased was someone who helped with the upkeep. Consider this property as if it has no place in the estate when it comes time to do inventory. Make sure you explain the situation to anyone who has questions.

Transfer on Death Deeds (TODD)

In cases where the deceased wanted to maintain ownership, that doesn’t mean that they didn’t put up something to help it automatically transfer. Maybe they used a transfer on death deed (TODD), otherwise known as a transfer-on-death deed. This is an option some homeowners utilize in the case that they’re sole owner.

So, if they were love birds till the end, they might not have opted for this option. Sometimes, people create a TODD because there are limited ways to prevent the home from going through probate when the home is owned exclusively by one individual. Not everyone has the time or gets the chance to put their spouse on the title.

The main perk about these deeds is that they don’t go into effect until after the owner has passed. So, the original owner gets to maintain full ownership for the foreseeable future. It’s more or less like how companies may avoid going public and stay private to avoid having shareholders change the company or obtain ownership.

Any beneficiary of a TODD has no legal right to the property as long as the original owner is still alive. However, once the owner’s death certificate is put in the public records, the beneficiary should assume that their name may already be on the title. To be sure, check with the public lands records office. That may mean there’s one thing you don’t have to worry about dealing with during probate.

Transferring Title with Joint Tenancy

When someone passes and their home was owned in a joint tenancy, that part will pass to the other owner automatically. It’s just swallowed up by whoever owned the property along with the deceased. In a few years, it might not even seem like there was more than one owner. This is similar to a TODD, but the joint tenant already has ownership and simply obtains whatever part of the home the deceased would have otherwise owned. That means you probably won’t have to worry about this during probate.

And going back to how a TODD is a kind of deed, any joint tenancy must be spelled out in the deed. It the joint tenancy wasn’t spelled out in that piece of paperwork, it might not hold up. Treat the deed and that piece of writing in the deed like you might treat a will in probate. To further the similarity, people hire lawyers to compose the language of a joint tenancy just as they hire attorneys to compose their estate planning documents.

Minnesota Title Transfer Lawyers

How the home was handled through Minnesota estate planning could be what impacts probate a lot. Perhaps it won’t be as much of a concern in terms of legal matters. However, should you ever find yourself having trouble with any kind of concern with the estate, contact a probate lawyer at Flanders Law Firm LLC. One phone call to 612-424-0398 will help them assess what’s going on and let them know how they can serve you.

Even in the case the home is fully taken care of, they can always be there for you for all of the probate matters that you need help with. They get that being an executor during probate may mean pleasing a lot of beneficiaries, and it’s not always easy. Maybe this is how you’ll find a way to make things simpler.


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