The laws of Texas changed in 2015 allowing Transfer on Death Deeds, commonly known as TODDs. Prior to 2015, many attorneys had been using Lady Bird Deeds and Enhanced Life Estate Deeds to transfer a property upon an owner’s death without the need of probate.

The Transfer on Death Deeds, Lady Bird Deeds, and Enhanced Life Estate Deeds all allow the client to maintain control and ownership and possession of their home (property) while having an automatic transfer upon their death. Your loved ones will be able to avoid probate with Transfer on Death Deed, a costly process that involves months of waiting and court appearances.

While Lady Bird Deeds and Enhanced Life Estate Deeds had been used for decades prior to 2015, it is no longer the recommended document to transfer a home upon death.

Will a Revocable Transfer on Death Deed save me money and my estate money?

Yes. A TODD done by the Oxner Legha Law Firm is cheaper than the cost to file an Application for Probate with Harris County in Houston, Texas. TODDs are often the most overlooked document when it comes to estate planning. This law firm believes that under today’s laws, a Transfer on Death Deed can be more important than a Will. If you do not have a TODD, then your estate will need to be probated, which can take time, money, and be confusing.

While waiting for the probate process taxes need to be paid, maintenance needs to be performed, and other costs, which can be difficult to track and designate as to who is responsible. A TODD eliminates the waiting as the property automatically transfers upon the grantor’s death to the listed beneficiaries.

Are Revocable Transfer on Death Deeds revocable?

Yes. Revocable Transfer on Death Deeds are revocable at any time by the grantor prior to the grantor’s death. To revoke a transfer on death deed, the client (grantor) must file a revocation, a final divorce decree, or a new transfer on death deed with in the real property before the death of the grantor.

Can a Power of Attorney (POA) be used to sign a Revocable Transfer on Death Deed?

No. POAs cannot be used to sign a Revocable Transfer on Death Deed by the agent on behalf of the principal. While a POA cannot create a TODD, a POA can revoke a Transfer on Death Deed on behalf of the principal.

Can a Will be used to revoke, amend, alter or cancel a Revocable Transfer on Death Deed?

No. Revocable Transfer on Death Deeds designate the home / property as a non-probate asset, and as such, cannot be amended by a Will, which serves as itself instructions for probate assets upon the testator’s death.

Are TODDs subject to Medicaid Claims (Medicaid Estate Recovery Program)?

No. Transfer on Death Deeds take the real property and designate it as a non-probate asset. MERP Claims are made against the decedent’s estate in probate. Non-probate assets are not considered during probate when considering Medicaid Claims.

Should I hire an Attorney to Help me draft a Revocable Transfer on Death Deed?

Yes. A home is commonly the most valuable asset in a person’s estate at the time of their death. It is therefore very important that the proper steps be taken to ensure that the property goes to the right people and in the proper fashion.

We offer flat rates for putting together an estate plan that includes a Transfer on Death Deed. Schedule a consultation to get started with Houston’s premiere and affordable estate attorneys.

Jason Oxner

About Jason Oxner

Jason is licensed in the State of Texas and is a member of the State Bar’s Health Law Section, Real Estate and Probate Section, and Business Law Section. More about Jason Oxner.

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