Philip J. Kavesh
Nationally recognized attorney helping clients with customized estate planning guidance for over 40 years.

What has been missing for so long is a means of transferring real estate in a simple, probate-free process. In about half the states, that hole has been plugged.

Probate can be messy, time-consuming and costly. Consequently, many people want to avoid it for their own estates.

Unfortunately, probate is unavoidable if you own real estate and have not done any estate planning.

If you have done estate planning, however, then there are three common ways to transfer real estate without probate.

Joint Tenancy 

This is one of the most common ways that people seek to avoid probate. When someone is made a joint tenant of any real estate, that person automatically takes possession of the property after any other owners pass away. Most attorneys counsel against this, however, as the property can often be attached by any joint tenant’s creditors.

Trusts

Trusts do not go through probate, making them an excellent way to transfer real estate. However, many people do not need a trust for anything else so the expense of getting one is not always worth it.

Transfer on Death Deed 

As AZcentral points out in a recent article, titled “Probate-free real-estate deeds spread across U.S.,” transfer on death deeds are another way to avoid having real estate pass through probate. However, they must be properly recorded during life to be effective upon death. Note: these deeds are only available in about half the states.

If you own real estate and would like to avoid probate upon postmortem transfer, then contact an experienced estate planning attorney to discuss these options and determine which is best for you.

Do You Need Legal Help Regarding Probate Issues In California?

If a loved one died without a will and you need legal assistance regarding the probate process you should be speak with an experienced probate attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our office directly at 800.756.5596 to claim your space at one of our free, informative seminars. Your attendance will qualify you for a discount for our probate services. We proudly serve clients throughout California with offices in Torrance, Newport Beach, Orange, Woodland Hills and Pasadena.

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