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Tina
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31756
Experience:  16 years of legal experience including real estate law.
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I read this article on quitclaim deeds here at your site.

Resolved Question:

I read this article on quitclaim deeds here at your site. My question is, if someone has a quitclaim deed on an undivided estate could that quitclaim deed be filed resulting in the person with the deed getting a tax statement from the county? In this case the person who deeded their interest is deceased.

I signed a Quitclaim Deed to my son. He received the tax statement from the county with his name on it. Will I be able to use that statement for my tax return? I thought the quitclaim deed was used in the event of my death and didn't realize title to my home would be transferred.
You lost all interest in the property the minute you signed the quitclaim deed over to your son. You wouldn't be allowed to use the land taxes on your tax deductions. The quitclaim deed you signed has nothing to do with your death.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.


Hello and welcome.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service. I am working on your answer now and will post it here shortly. Thank you for your patience while I prepare your answer.

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

I agree with the statement that you posted above: You lost all interest in the property the minute you signed the quitclaim deed over to your son. You wouldn't be allowed to use the land taxes on your tax deductions. The quitclaim deed you signed has nothing to do with your death.

That is mostly accurate since a quitclaim deed is used to transfer title in property and the grantee listed on the deed becomes the owner of the property, so they would typically receive a tax statement from the local authorities and be liable to pay the taxes. The grantee would no longer have any interest in the property and could not take a tax deduction with regard to taxes paid on the property normally.

Some states require that the deed be delivered before title actually transfers to the grantee, but if a tax statement was sent to the grantee, that indicates that title has passed and the grantor listed in the quit claim deed no longer has any interest in the property unless they granted the property to himself and another as grantees.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Thank you!

Tina

Note: Please feel free to request me if you have future legal questions by going to your “My Questions” page and clicking on “Request Tina again” next to my photo. I look forward to hearing from you again.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Yes, I understand thank you and I am not deceased quite yet. In the question i posted I specifically said "In this case the person who deeded their interest is deceased." :-) . What I am asking is would the also apply


in a case where the quitclaim deed is part of an undivided estate.


What I cut and pasted in the question bears no relation to me. I merely say that posted on your site here. I've not signed any kind of deed to anyone.

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

I'm glad to hear that you have not signed a deed over to anyone. A deceased person cannot deed their interest to someone else, but they can include such a provision in their will, which would then typically be probated.

If the deceased person deeded their interest prior to their death and delivered the deed to the grantee, then title would normally pass to the grantee, but title cannot be passed upon an owner's death except by order of a probate court or if the property is held as joint tenants with rights of survivorship. In that case, the surviving owner would normally receive full ownership upon the death of the co-owner.

I hope that addresses your concerns. Please let me know if there is something else you are not clear about regarding your ownership and I would be happy to address it.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks again. What I am asking is would the also apply


in a case where the quitclaim deed is part of an undivided estate.


Put another way, let's say my uncle deeded to me his interest in an undivided estate. Can I take a survey of his interest in that estate along with the quitclaim deed and start getting a tax statement from the county?


 

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
Since the uncle deeded his interest in his property to you (undivided typically means there are no other owners involved), that would normally mean you are now the rightful owner of the property, at least to the extent he owned it since a quitclaim deed does not warrant that there are no other interests in the property. Given that, you would normally record the deed with the county clerk's office and they would notify the taxing authorities and you should begin receiving a tax statement from the county, yes.

You do not necessarily need a survey for the taxing authority to send you a tax statement, but the quitclaim deed should be recorded with the county clerk's office typically.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I guess I misunderstood what 'undivided' means in real estate legal terms.


There are actually two quitclaim deeds. Let us say the estate is 200 acres.


My uncle signed a quitclaim to me. A cousin has an uncle that signed a quitclaim to her. Can we each take a survey of of the estate, say 100 acres each and each get a separate tax statement from the county instead of getting one tax statement covering the entire 200 acres?

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
OK, that makes sense to me now. Thank you for clarifying your question.

No, that is not typically possible, although you could contact the county equalization department to see whether they would be willing to do that. In most states and counties, you would need to subdivide the property into 100 acre parcels in order to achieve that. It sounds as though you and your cousin own the property as tenants in common, which means you each have an undivided 1/2 interest in the property and the tax statements would be in both of your names for the entire 200 acres.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

No we are not tenants in common. We are both just heirs to the estate. We want to get separate
tax statements and make payments seperate with each getting a statement for 100 acres.

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
I see. In that case you currently have no ownership interest, only an expectancy, and the county assessor would not typically send either of you a statement at all I'm afraid.

You could call the county equalization department but I have not heard of a taxing authority providing a statement to a non-owner unless they have power of attorney or guardianship over the owner's affairs.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

But getting a statement for the entire 200 acres now.

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
OK, if you are not an owner of the property, I am surprised they would send it to you, but that is the best you could expect typically. It would have to be subdivided to get a statement for only 100 acres normally.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I don't understand why that should be surprising. In real estate law, when the deeded owner dies, leaves no will but leaves heirs, would not someone typically get the tax statement? If not, where typically does the tax statement go?

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
Hello again,

When you said you were an heir, I was not aware that the owner had passed away. In that case, the property will typically be awarded to you by a probate court and you should receive the tax statement. If the owner were still alive, you would simply have an expectancy since they could change their will at any time. I was not aware that the owner who bequeathed the property to you had passed away.

In any case, you would typically need to subdivide the property to get two separate tax statements, each for 100 acres of the property.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

OK now we're getting closer. The owner of the estate passed in 1954 He left heirs, one of which was my uncle(deceased). Another heir would be her uncle (also deceased). Now we are heirs to the same estate each with quitclaim deeds from our respective uncles.


I am getting tax statements for a parcel that covers 200 acres and we want to each get tax statement that cover 100 acres. Can we get the 200 acres surveyed, split into 100 acre and with our respective quitclaim deeds take this somewhere and start getting separate tax statements without needing to go through a lawyer?

Expert:  Tina replied 1 year ago.
I see. Yes, you would need to subdivide the property, but you also need to deed each other your interest in the 100 acres you will no longer own. For example, you would deed your 1/2 interest in 100 of the acres you no longer wish to own and your cousin would deed their interest in the 100 acres they no longer wish to own.

But first you must check any local zoning ordinances to determine whether there are any laws with which you must comply in subdividing it. You would take a survey and a plat to the local equalization department to record with their offices and transfer the 100 acres interests to each other.

The deeds should then be recorded with the county clerk's office. It is possible to do this without an attorney, but I have seen mistakes by non-attorneys lead to thousands of dollars in legal disputes, so it is usually best to retain an attorney to at least guide you through the process.
Tina, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 31756
Experience: 16 years of legal experience including real estate law.
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