How to Disclaim a Beneficiary Deed in Arizona

By Tom Streissguth

Since 2001, the state of Arizona has allowed property owners to sign and record a beneficiary deed conveying property directly to a named beneficiary upon the death of the grantor -- the property owner who signs the deed. The beneficiary deed allows a homeowner to pass property to his heirs without having to set up a trust or have the transfer go through probate. The property remains part of the estate and may be taxable as such, although it avoids gift taxes. In addition, anyone named as the beneficiary may disclaim it.

Disclaimer of Interest

If you wish to disclaim a beneficiary deed in which you are named the beneficiary, you must sign and have notarized a disclaimer of interest form. This is a standard form available from a court clerk, attorney's office or online from numerous websites providing legal templates and fillable forms.

Time Limits

According to Arizona law, the disclaimer document must be filed within nine months of the death of the grantor if the beneficiary deed was created as a "testamentory instrument" -- meaning as part of a last will and testament. If the beneficiary deed was created under different circumstances, the beneficiary must still file the disclaimer within nine months of whatever event allowed him to take legal title to the property. If you were not aware of the beneficiary deed's existence and later become aware of it, you have nine months to file the disclaimer from the date you received notice of the deed.

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Filing Requirements

Arizona requires the disclaimer to be filed in the county court where the probate case is taking place, or county where the estate is being administered if probate wasn't required. The beneficiary filing the disclaimer must provide it in person or by certified mail, with return receipt requested, to the personal representative of the deceased or executor of the will.

Disclosure

You must give the legal description of the property in the disclaimer. This legal description should be listed on the beneficiary deed. You must sign the disclaimer, have your signature witnessed or notarized and provide a copy to anyone else with an interest in the property, such as a mortgage lender. To ensure the disclaimer is legally recorded, you must provide a copy to the county recorder's office where the property is located. Once you file a disclaimer of interest, you may not revoke it. In addition, you cannot file a disclaimer if you have taken any benefit from the property, such as rent, or taken possession of the property.

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What Happens if You Do Not Revoke a Beneficiary Deed?

References

Related articles

How to Prepare Your Own Will & Beneficiary Deed in Missouri

A will is a legal instrument that tells the probate court how to distribute your assets after you die. Because the probate process often involves considerable expense and delay, Missouri law authorizes real property owners to execute a beneficiary deed, which allows someone to transfer real property to his heirs after his death without having to submit the property to probate. Both wills and beneficiary deeds must be drafted in particular ways to be enforced. Nevertheless, if your estate is small, you can prepare both a will and a beneficiary deed without the assistance of an attorney.

Declination of Interest in Wills

Wills generally describe how you want your assets to be distributed after your death by designating specific beneficiaries. But no matter what assets you try to give or whom you want to give them to, the beneficiary you name in your will always has the option to decline the inheritance. State laws vary, but a declination typically requires the beneficiary to take formal steps to renounce the inheritance received.

How to Fill Out the Deed of a Trust to Secure Assumption

A deed of trust to secure assumption is not a property ownership document. Some states, such as Texas and California, use filed deeds of trust instead of mortgages to secure payment of a home loan. Mortgages have a buyer and a lender, but deeds of trust have a third party, the trustee. The trustee holds temporary ownership of the property on behalf of the lender. If the homeowner stops paying the loan, the trustee can go through a streamlined process to foreclose on the home outside the state court system. If a person is transferring his interest in a property, and that property is subject to a home loan secured by a deed of trust, he's still liable for the loan even after he transfers his interest. The seller can use a deed of trust to secure assumption to create a second lien. The second lien is legally inferior to the home loan, but gives him the right to take the property back if the buyer doesn't pay the loan.

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