Tip Sheet for California Real Property Owners Who have Created a Trust, by Deed and Record

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Persons with a living trust but who own California real property outside of the trust are at risk of probate. This Tip Sheet by Deed and Record explains the importance of a trust owning the real property and how to transfer ownership.

Superior Court of California Probate Division

Both the creation of the trust and the transfer of California real property ownership to the trust are required to avoid probate court.

This Tip Sheet by Deed and Record explains the importance of a trust owning the real property and how to change ownership from the individual to the trust. People who have created a trust, but do not have the trust own their California real property, have done so because one of the following reasons. Ownership change of real property was omitted when the trust was created, the real property was acquired after the trust was created or the real property was transferred out of trust by a lender for underwriting purposes.

Change of ownership is by deed from the owner as an individual to the owner’s trust. A deed is a document signed by the owner of real property to transfer ownership. The deed must be part of the public database maintained by each county in California. The deed is “recorded” in the county where the real property is located. Recording puts the world on notice how title is held and is the final word on ownership.

Transfers in and out of a trust are excluded from reappraisal by the assessor’s office and avoid any increase in the property tax base. There is no transfer tax on trust transfer deeds. California Revenue and Taxation Code exempts trust transfer deeds from transfer tax. To obtain this exemption the tax code must be stated on the deed.

People who have created a trust, but do not have the trust own their California real property will not avoid probate court. Ownership change into the trust is by deed from the owner as an individual to the owner’s trust. The deed must be recorded in the County where the real property is located.

This Tip Sheet is published by Mark W. Bidwell, an attorney licensed by the State of California. His office is located at 4952 Warner Avenue, Suite 235, Huntington Beach, CA 92649. Telephone number is 714-846-2888.

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Mark Bidwell
Timeshare Lovers
since: 05/2016
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