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Briefcase: Transfer on Death Deeds

Guest: Janet Heppard


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Low-income families grieving from the death of a loved one can face additional hardships when they attempt to prove ownership of a deceased person's property. Janet Heppard, with The University of Houston Law Center is a probate law expert and explains how people can ensure that their property is transferred in a manner consistent with their intent.

"Before a person dies, they can complete a transfer on death deed, also known as a TODD," Professor Heppard said. "Using this form, Texans can transfer real estate to loved ones, effective upon their death, without going through probate."

"TODDs can be especially helpful after disasters like hurricanes and floods, when families need to prove property ownership, to get emergency repair funds and other government relief," she continued. "The form must be completed and filed in the county's property records office prior to the death of the property owner. It can be revoked at any time by the owner, prior to death."

More information and help is available at Texas Law Help.