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Quitclaim Deed

Free Quitclaim Deed Form

Utilize our Quitclaim Deed to relinquish your rights and ownership claims when selling or gifting a property.

A Quitclaim Deed is a vital legal document facilitating the seamless transfer of real estate between parties. Typically employed in situations of trust, such as family transfers or rectifying title defects, this deed relinquishes the grantor's interest without providing title assurances.

Table of Contents

What is a Quitclaim Deed?

A Quitclaim Deed, also known simply as a quitclaim, is a legal document facilitating the transfer of property ownership from the grantor (owner/seller) to the grantee (purchaser). Notably, it transfers the rights and legal interests the grantor possesses in the property without guaranteeing the quality of the title.

Unlike other deeds, a quitclaim doesn't offer full protection to the grantee. If there are outstanding liens or legal claims, the grantee might not secure complete ownership. Recording this deed is crucial for the new owner to establish and prove their property ownership.

Purpose of a Quitclaim Deed

The primary purpose of a quitclaim deed is the swift and straightforward transfer of property ownership. While it doesn't provide explicit assurances, many states presume the grantor's good faith regarding conflicts or additional owners. It is crucial to note that this deed only transfers ownership and does not absolve the grantor of responsibilities associated with existing mortgages on the property.

When to Use a Quitclaim Deed

Quitclaim deeds find common usage in various scenarios:

  • Divorce: Transfer property after a divorce settlement.
  • Marriage: Add a new spouse to the property title.
  • Title Defects: Rectify errors like misspelled names.
  • Family Transfers: Transfer property between family members.
  • Estate Planning: Transfer property to a living trust.
  • Business Transactions: Transfer property between parent companies and subsidiaries.
  • Public Auction Sale: Purchase property with the assumption of a defective title.

How Does a Quitclaim Deed Work?

A quitclaim deed conveys different types of ownership, including sole ownership, joint tenancy, tenancy by the entirety, tenancy in common, and community property. Each has specific implications and legal nuances.

Quitclaim Deed vs. Warranty Deed

Unlike quitclaim deeds, some deeds offer protection and warranties for the guarantee.

The most common types are special warranty and general warranty deeds.

In both cases, the grantor owns the property rightfully and has the legal right to transfer property title and warrant against certain title defects.

Here is a table comparing the three most common types of property deed transfer forms:

* Quitclaim Deed Special Warranty Deed General Warranty Deed
Warranties NO warranties as to the quality of title Warrants against ONLY those defects caused by the current grantor Warrants against ALL defects, even those not caused by the current grantor
Period Covered None Only when the current grantor owned the property The property’s entire history
Most Common Use When little to no money is exchanged - estate plans, divorce, fixing title defects When money is exchanged - trusts, fiduciaries, tax sales, commercial real estate sales When money is exchanged - purchasing a home, obtaining a mortgage

What to Include in a Quitclaim Deed?

When crafting a quitclaim deed, ensure it includes:

  • Grantor and Grantee Information: Clearly state the names and addresses of both parties.
  • Consideration: Specify the amount, if any, paid for the property.
  • Location and Legal Description: Provide the city, county, and a detailed legal description of the property.
  • Parcel Number: Include the tax assessor-assigned number.
  • Preparer Information: Name and address of the document preparer.
  • Signatures and Dates: Signatures of both parties with dates.
  • Witnesses and Notary: Include witnesses if required by state laws, and ensure notarization for authenticity.

Additional Considerations

Depending on the property and situation, include terms related to:

  • Easements: Grantor's right to continue using part of the land.
  • Encumbrances: Declare any known claims or liens.
  • Life Estate: Grantor's right to use the property until death.
  • Mineral Rights: Reservation of subsurface rights.

Before finalizing, review state laws to avoid inadvertently creating warranties with certain words in the deed.

How to File a Quitclaim Deed

You should file the quitclaim deed with your local county recorder’s office (see table below) to create an official public record of the transfer of ownership, give public notice, and prioritize the grantee’s claim of ownership.

While filing with the local county recorder or clerk does not guarantee a perfect title, it does create a public record of your claim to ownership.

Where to Record a Quitclaim Deed

State Signing Requirements Where to Record
Alabama 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (§ 35-4-20) County Probate Judge
Alaska Notary Public (AS 34.15.150) District Recorder's Office
Arizona Notary Public (§ 33-401) County Recorder's Office
Arkansas 2 Disinterested Witnesses and Notary Public (§ 18-12-104) Circuit Court
California Notary Public (Section 27287) County Recorder's Office
Colorado Notary Public (§ 38-35-103) County Recorder's Office
Connecticut 2 Witnesses and Notary Public (§ 47-5) Town Clerk's Office
Delaware Notary Public (§ 122) Kent County, New Castle County, or Sussex County
Florida 2 Witnesses and Notary Public (§ 695.03) County Recorder's Office
Georgia 1 Witness and Notary Public (§ 48-4-44) Clerk of the Superior Court
Hawaii Notary Public (§ 502-41) Hawaii Bureau of Conveyances
Idaho Notary Public (§ 55-805) County Recorder's Office
Illinois Notary Public (§ 765 ILCS 5/20) County Recorder's Office
Indiana Notary Public (§ 32-21-2-3) County Recorder's Office
Iowa Notary Public (§ 558.31) County Recorder's Office
Kansas Notary Public (§ 58-2205) County Recorder's Office
Kentucky 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (KRS 382.130) County Clerk's Office
Louisiana 2 Witnesses and Notary Public (CC 1839) Clerk of Court's Office
Maine Notary Public (Title 33, § 203) County Registry of Deeds
Maryland Notary Public (§ 3-104) Circuit Court Division of Land Records
Massachusetts Notary Public (Chapter 183 §29) County Registry of Deeds
Michigan Notary Public (§ 565.201) County Register of Deeds
Minnesota Notary Public (§ 507.24) County Recorder's Office
Mississippi Notary Public (§ 89-3-7) Clerk of the Chancery Clerk's Office
Missouri Notary Public (§ 442.150) County Recorder of Deeds
Montana Notary Public (MCA 70-21-203) County Clerk and Recorder's Office
Nebraska Notary Public (§ 76-211) County Recorder's Office
Nevada Notary Public (NRS 111.105) County Recorder's Office
New Hampshire Notary Public (§ 477:3) County Register of Deeds
New Jersey Notary Public (Section 46:4-1) County Clerk's Office
New Mexico Notary Public (§ 47-1-44 ) County Clerk's Office
New York Notary Public (Article 9 § 306) County Clerk's Office
North Carolina Notary Public (§ 47-38) County Register of Deeds
North Dakota Notary Public (§ 47-19-03) County Recorder's Office
Ohio Notary Public (§ 5301.01) County Recorder's Office
Oklahoma Notary Public (§ 16-26) County Clerk's Office
Oregon Notary Public (ORS § 93.410) County Recorder's Office
Pennsylvania Notary Public ( 21 P.S. § 42) County Recorder's Office
Rhode Island Notary Public (§ 34-11-1.1) City or Town Office
South Carolina 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (§ 30-5-30) County Register of Deeds
South Dakota 1 Witness or Notary Public (§ 43-25-26) County Register of Deeds
Tennessee 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (§ 66-22-101) County Recorder's Office
Texas 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (§ 11.002(c)) County Clerk's Office
Utah Notary Public (§ 57-3-101) County Recorder's Office
Vermont Notary Public (27 V.S.A. § 301) County Clerk's Office
Virginia 2 Witnesses and Notary Public (§ 55-106) Circuit Court Clerk
Washington Notary Public (§ 64.04.020) County Recorder's Office
West Virginia 2 Witnesses or Notary Public (§ 39-1-2) County Clerk's Office
Wisconsin Notary Public (§ 39-1-2) County Register of Deeds
Wyoming Notary Public (§ 34-26-107) County Clerk's Office

Check with your local county clerk regarding additional forms you might need to file with your quitclaim deed, such as a Preliminary Change of Ownership or a Property Transfer form.

Also, ask about transfer taxes or fees associated with the transfer and filing.

Before filling out your quitclaim deed form, write your state at the top of the document.

Legal Templates suggests you use a state-specific quitclaim deed form as a best practice.

Step 1 – Fill in Preparer and Recipient Name and Address

1. Preparer. Provide the full name and address of the individual preparing or writing the quitclaim deed. The preparer may be the grantor, grantee, or a third party.

2. Recipient. Write the name and address of the person who should receive the recorded deed and tax statements after recording.

preparer and recipient

Step 2 – Enter Effective Date and Grantor(s) Details

3. Effective Date. Fill in the full name of the grantor(s), the property’s current owner. Indicate if the grantor(s) is an individual, individuals, a married couple, or an entity (i.e., corporation, LLC, partnership, or trust).

4. Grantor(s). Provide the mailing address for the grantor(s). If there is more than one grantor, provide just one mailing address to receive correspondence).

date and grantor

Step 3 – Fill in Grantee(s) Details

5. Grantee(s). Write the full name of the grantee(s), the individual or entity that will become the new owner. Indicate if the grantee(s) is an individual, multiple individuals, a married couple, or an entity (i.e., corporation, LLC, partnership, or trust).


Step 4 – Identify Transfer and Property Details

6. Consideration. Enter the amount of money paid as consideration for the real estate transfer. If the property is transferred as a gift, you can specify a nominal amount, such as $10, as consideration.

7. County and State. Write the county and state where the property is located. Specify whether or not the property is in an unincorporated area.

8. Legal Description. A legal description is a geographical description commonly identified by a government survey, metes, bounds, or lot and block. You can find this description in the property’s deed or through the county assessor.

transfer and property details

Step 5 – Choose Ownership Option and Exceptions

9. Ownership. Specify how the new owners will hold the property. We have included the most common forms of property ownership on our form.

10. Exceptions. State whether or not there are any exceptions to the property, such as an easement (reserve right to continue using a portion of land), covenant, reserve life estate, or mineral rights.


Step 6 – Identify Homestead Option

11. Homestead. Check whether or not the property is the grantor’s homestead. Generally, a homestead is a person’s primary residence.


Step 7 – Choose Transfer Tax Option

12. Transfer Tax. Specify whether or not the property transfer is exempt from transfer tax. Refer to state or local laws, as many states provide various exemptions from transfer tax, such as transfers between parent and child. If not exempt, specify the transfer tax the grantor or grantee will pay for the transfer.

transfer tax

Step 8 – Identify Witnesses

13. Witnesses. Depending on the property’s state, one or two witnesses must sign the deed. Check your local state law to see if any witnesses need to sign.


Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Risks Associated with Quitclaim Deeds?

Quitclaim deeds do not provide the same level of protection as other deeds. Grantees might not obtain full ownership if there are outstanding liens or legal claims against the property.

Can a Quitclaim Deed be Used for Business Transfers?

Yes, quitclaim deeds are commonly used for transferring property between parent companies and subsidiaries in business transactions.

How long is a quitclaim deed good for?

Quitclaim deeds transfer ownership rights ‘for all time,’ but the parties to the deed have a period after execution in which either can challenge the validity of the deed. After that time, a statute of limitations goes into effect, and the parties may no longer contest the deed.

Quitclaim Deed Sample

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