In 2014, the Washington State Legislature created the Uniform Real Property Transfer on Death Act (RCW 64.80).
Nolo has additional information.
Transfer on Death Deeds are not present transfers like Quitclaim Deeds.
Avoiding Probate and Washington State Estate Tax with a Transfer on Death Deed for Real Estate. The most expensive asset to probate is typically the home of the deceased. A transfer on death deed avoids probate and eliminates that cost. The transfer of property pursuant to a transfer on death deed will be exempt from Washington estate tax, Federal Estate Tax, and real estate transfer tax, provided that a certified copy of the death certificate of the deceased is recorded along with an Excise Tax Affidavit to transfer title to beneficiaries.
Beneficiaries take the property subject to liens, taxes, liabilities, and other encumbrances to which the decedent’s Estate is subject. The beneficiary receives a step-up in basis to the date-of-death value. The statute was created in 2014. Prior to that, quitclaiming to a revocable living trust was used to avoid just probate, but not estate tax.
A transfer on death deed creates no present interest in the beneficiary to the property. A transfer on death deed does not affect the owner’s right to transfer or encumber the property. The Deed is moot if the property is sold.
See a Sample Transfer on Death Deed Below:
TRANSFER ON DEATH DEED
Pursuant to RCW Chapter 64.80, the Washington Uniform Real Property Transfer On Death Act, for no consideration, an unmarried person, at the death of does hereby CONVEY, TRANSFER, and RELEASE, all right, title, and interest in, and to, the below described real property in King County, Washington, as follows:
To as their sole and separate property, as Joint Tenants with Right of Survivorship.
Parcel Number: 36003.2865
Commonly known as: 4919 N. Main Street, Bellevue, WA 98006
Legally described as:
LOT 12, BLOCK 9, NORTH MAIN ADDITION, AS PER PLAT RECORDED IN VOLUME “N” OF PLATS, PAGE 49;
SITUATE IN THE CITY OF BELLEVUE, COUNTY OF KING, STATE OF WASHINGTON.
Pursuant to RCW 64.80.100 (5), a transfer on death deed transfers property without covenant or warranty of title.
Pursuant to RCW § 42.44.100, I certify that I know or have satisfactory evidence that is the person who appeared before me, and said person acknowledged that signed this instrument and acknowledged it to be their free and voluntary act for the uses and purposes mentioned in the instrument.
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