Beneficiary Deeds in Colorado

by Michael Selinfreund, President/General Counsel of Cherry Creek Title Services, Inc.

This article is intended for educational purposes only and not as legal advice

 

Beneficiary Deeds have been around in Colorado for a decade and are governed by C.R.S. 15-15-402-415.   They work very similar to a POD bank account.  The present owner seeking to pass property outside of probate upon their death not only retains full ownership and control, but they can revoke the Beneficiary Deed at any time in their lifetime just like you can remove or change a POD beneficiary to a bank account.  The Beneficiary Deed is a better choice in many estate planning circumstances that previously required the property owner to create a life estate, which gives up ownership, some control and cannot be revoked; a trust, which is more expensive and complicated; or the present conveyance of an interest to the intended beneficiary adding them in ownership as a joint tenant which immediately and irrevocably conveys an ownership interest including some control.  And, any conveyance or encumbering of the property will thereafter require the cooperation of the joint tenant grantee.  Finally, judgments, tax liens and other adverse recorded matters against the joint tenant grantee will attach to the property title whereas that isn’t the case with a Beneficiary Deed.   Beneficiary Deeds are not for everyone nor every circumstance, but they’re often the perfect vehicle for accomplishing your goals.  To read other helpful legal tips, visit my profile and view previous posts.