Quitclaim Deed in Los Angeles

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“Property transfers and ownership changes can occur in a variety of ways. One such method is a Quitclaim Deed in Los Angeles, allowing homeowners to transfer a property title quickly. In addition to being useful in Estate Planning, this information can also benefit a loved one or yourself.”

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Quitclaim Deed in Los Angeles

It is common but sometimes misunderstood that quitclaim deeds apply in various situations. Read on to learn all you need to know about quitclaim deeds and when to use one. They are one of the fastest ways to transfer property ownership — but there are things you need to know first.


Quitclaim Deed: What Is It?

Several elements make up a quitclaim deed, including:

  • The property legal description/documents,
  • It is the name given to the individual who transferred their interest
  • Name of the grantee (the grantee),
  • And the authenticated signatures signed by both parties.

A quitclaim deed transfers property between family members instead of a sale. It is possible to add a spouse to a property title after marriage or remove from it after divorce. Clarify inherited property ownership, add to (or out of) revocable living trusts, clarify easements, or change the title.


How Quitclaim Deeds Work in Los Angeles?

This form of conveyance does not guarantee the property’s title. Instead, it transfers to the grantee any ownership interest that the grantor (the person transferring the property) may have in the property.

How does a quitclaim deed work?  An individual who owns the property currently and wishes to transfer it to another person prepares the quitclaim deed. As part of the quitclaim deed, the grantor must provide information such as:

  • The grantor’s name,
  • The grantee’s address,
  • A legal description of the property,
  • And the date of the transfer.

The grantee must receive an original signed quitclaim deed from the grantor after the grantor signs the document before a notary public who will verify the grantor’s identity.

Creating a public record of the transfer of ownership and protecting the grantee’s ownership interest is achieved by filing the quitclaim deed with the county recorder’s office where the property resides.

There is no guarantee from the grantor of a quitclaim deed that he has complete title to the transferred property. This is why they exist where the grantor and grantee are familiar with each other. The title to the property is still being determined.


Quitclaim Deed Types

How does a quit claim deed work? If the property passes from a grantor to a grantee (buyer), deeds differ in terms of what they state or guarantee. In contrast to a quitclaim deed, a warranty deed provides confident assurance when ownership passes. General and extraordinary warranty deeds are two common forms that commonly appear in property sales.

A general warranty deed provides the grantee with excellent protection since the grantor guarantees the grantee truly owns the property (and another entity cannot reclaim it). The grantee is responsible if any breach occurs in the grantor’s guarantee of ownership. It covers the entire property history—even when the grantor wasn’t the owner.

When a special warranty deed transfers ownership of a commercial property. It establishes that no other person has any claim to the property if the grantor has owned it for at least a short period.


How Do Quitclaim Deeds Differ From Warranty Deeds?

A warranty deed is another way to transfer property titles. As a result, it becomes more common during sale and purchase transactions. It takes more time and is more formal than a quitclaim title transfer.

A warranty deed protects the buyer from future liens and title issues by providing monetary compensation and legal clauses. When you buy your primary home, you’ll most likely use one. Quitclaim deeds appear in many different kinds of transactions, so they’re not uncommon or unneeded.

Using quitclaim deeds to transfer real estate quickly and efficiently between two trusted parties. In a quitclaim transaction, the new owner inherits the title as it is. It is less common than a warranty deed as part of a sale and purchase agreement.


How to Prepare a Quitclaim Deed

There are additional requirements to prepare a quitclaim deed in Los Angeles County:

  • There must be property in Los Angeles County at the time of the quitclaim deed.
  • A signature must be original.
  • There must be a name and address for the party requesting the recording and a name and address for returning the document.
  • A microfilm reproduction requires a legible notary seal.
  • A completed Preliminary Change of Ownership Report (from the county assessor and county clerk-recorder) should accompany documents indicative of a change in ownership.
  • The document must be legible for a photographic record to be readable.
  • Additionally, the recorder specifies the size and margins of the pages.


A Guide to Filing a Quitclaim Deed in Los Angeles

How to file a quitclaim deed? In a quitclaim deed, a party declares its interest in transferring the property to another party. Even though the deed does not contain any warranties guaranteeing the property transfer.


A Guide to Filing a Quitclaim Deed in Los Angeles


It is common to submit quitclaim deeds together with warranty deeds, which prove the receiving party’s legitimate interest in the property legally. The county recorder’s office is where quitclaim deeds go in Los Angeles County.


Step 1

The Los Angeles County Recorder branch office is located at 12400 East Imperial Highway in Norwalk, a suburb of Los Angeles, where you can get a quitclaim deed. If you wish to get a copy of the county recorder form in person or would like one send by mail, visit the office in person.

You can purchase blank quitclaim deed forms at office supply stores or stationery stores or get them from Los Angeles County’s county registrar-recorder’s official website.


Step 2

Los Angeles County quitclaim deed forms, require the necessary information. As the grantor of the property, include your name and address in the appropriate blanks. Also, include the names of the grantees or persons who will receive possession.

A complete legal description of the property and the purchase price, if applicable, are also necessary information. A notary public must witness the signing of the grantor form.


Step 3

Suppose you plan to file a quitclaim deed and a documentary transfer tax form. In that case, you must also complete a preliminary change of ownership form and obtain it online or in person at a county recorder’s office.

The information on the documentary transfer tax form is the property’s location, fair market value, appraised value, and county and city taxes. You can also get the preliminary ownership change form from your county assessor in Los Angeles County.


Step 4

Quitclaim deed Los Angeles County Recorder’s Office requires you to file a quitclaim deed, documentary transfer tax form, and preliminary ownership change form. You can drop off your forms at Norwalk or one of the county recorder’s branch offices.

You may mail quitclaim deeds and other officially authorized documents to the main headquarters at the Norwalk office. Still, the branch offices will not accept these documents if they arrive via mail.


How And When Should We Need To Use A Quitclaim Deed?

There are many reasons why quitclaim deeds may be necessary, but they most often occur when transferring property between family members or spouses. For example, a divorce may result in transferring home ownership to one spouse through a quitclaim deed.

Quitclaim deeds help transfer real estate into Living Trusts during Estate Planning. However, obtaining permission from the Trustee before transferring real estate into the Trust is often essential.

If a mistake was made during the initial transaction, a quitclaim deed could also be used to reissue a title quickly. Many examples, such as spelling errors or missing signatures on the title, are fixable with a quick deed transfer.


How does a Quit Claim Deed benefit you?


Effective Way to Transfer Titles:

By using quitclaim deeds, family members can transfer property titles without the help of an attorney.


Gift Tax Benefits:

Tax-efficient quitclaim transfers enable families to avoid paying taxes on traditional real estate sales by claiming them as gifts.


Easy To Use:

Legalization is often as simple as signing a document with the witness’s signature and a notary public’s.


New Owner Can Avoid Liens:

The last owner remains financially responsible for any outstanding mortgages or tax liens on the property when a quitclaim deed takes effect.


Property Skips Probate:

When the owner has a terminal illness or another health condition, a quitclaim deed can transfer property before the owner dies.


Are There Any Disadvantages To A Quit Claim Deed?


No Protections for the Transaction:

Quitclaim deeds do not offer new property owners protections like warranty deeds do. In some cases, the grantor may also be withholding other information. The buyer cannot be sure that the property is free and clear or that no easements or restrictions exist. If the deed was fraudulent, there is little the buyer can do in these cases.


Responsibility Placed On The New Owner:

A title search can occur before signing a California quitclaim deed, allowing the new owner to avoid difficulties. The new owner is ultimately responsible for ensuring the property information is accurate before signing the deed.

Due to these reasons, it is advisable that quitclaim deeds only be used to transfer property between family members or trusted individuals. The property’s previous owner is unlikely to have disclosed all the relevant information about the property, so a California quit claim deed form would rarely appear in a typical real estate sale.


California Quitclaim Deed Costs

It is also necessary to pay a filing fee for a quitclaim deed California, as in other states. Los Angeles County, for example, charges a base fee of $15 and additional fees of approximately $87 in 2018. Additional pages are $3 each. The quit claim deed California cost is reasonable compared to other states’ fees.


Los Angeles Taxes on Quitclaim Deeds

In the same way, other deeds require payment of all back taxes. Quitclaim deeds also require payment. A gift (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return) is required if no money is exchanged between the grantor and the grantee.

Transferring a deed to another spouse or placing it into a trust does not result in a gift tax. California has a documentary tax, but it’s exempt if the grantor’s death caused the transfer.

To qualify for absolute property transfer tax exemptions, you must include them in the quitclaim deed. If you try to sell the property later, you may have to pay capital gains taxes. You could also miss out on some exemptions. It would help to speak with your tax adviser about your real estate transfer.


Is It Possible To Nullify A Quitclaim Deed?

It will be easier if both parties agree to overturn or cancel the quitclaim deed. Depending on the state, the statute of limitations may apply to such challenges if someone believes the California quit claim deed served to transfer a property illegally.


Quitclaim Deeds: Other Frequently Asked Questions

You will find the answers to some of the most common questions about quitclaim deeds in the following sections.


Are Quitclaim Deeds free from probate?

Because a quitclaim deed transfers property ownership while the grantee is still alive, it avoids probate. Therefore, before a grantee’s Estate Plan takes effect, ownership has already been transferred by the deed.


When does a quitclaim deed real estate expire?

Because quitclaim deeds permanently transfer ownership between two parties, they do not expire. However, a new deed must be recorded with the county clerk’s office to establish the official transfer of ownership.

Legal and financial issues can arise if the new deed doesn’t go through the proper channels.

It is advisable to file a new deed as soon as possible after the transfer, though there is no set deadline. It may be easier to transfer the mortgage if there is an official public record. If another family member claims the property, the deed on file can also be challenging.


Bottom Line

Quitclaim deeds release an individual’s interest in a property without defining the nature of the individual’s interest or rights and without providing any warranty of the individual’s interest or rights. The Quitclaim deed does not offer the same protections and promises that other real estate deeds provide. So, it only makes sense when certain conditions apply.

Hedy Ghavidel

HEDY GHAVIDEL Managing Attorney  Roseville Office  1-866-471-6981  info@attorneysre.com Bio...

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