When property transfers at the time of death from one person to another, this can be referred to as the transfer of property through the non probate process. In Minnesota, the non probate process can occur under a number of scenarios.
The most common type of non probate transfer of property in is the transfer of property by way of a “trust”.
The second most common type of non probate transfer of property in Minnesota is the transfer of property through the proper use of beneficiary forms.
Another common process to transfer property through a non probate process is through a Transfer On Death Deed (“TODD”).
Minnesota Non Probate Transfer: Trust
A trust is created as a result of a manifestation of an intention to create it – usually coming in the form of a trust document. A living trust can be viewed as a non probate asset because it creates a right for another person or entity to hold a property interest held by another person.
Because a trust document requires an intentional manifestation, a trust document is created before a person dies or becomes incapacitated such that their property can transfer to other persons without requiring the need for the probate process.
The biggest advantage of a trust is the ability to transfer property without requiring probate before a person dies and of course after a death too.
Minnesota Non Probate Transfer: Beneficiary Forms
The second most common type of non probate transfer of property in Minnesota is utilizing beneficiary forms. For example, bank accounts and insurance policies allow for beneficiaries to be named. Doing so allows for the transfer of property to a beneficiary upon the death of another person.
Unfortunately, a key element to this process involves death. In other words, a person who is unconscious or incapacitated cannot transfer property rights to a beneficiary. Thus, the non probate transfer of property through the use of beneficiary forms is limited when compared to the non probate transfer of property through a trust.
Minnesota Non Probate Transfer: Transfer on Death Deed
Another type of non probate transfer of property in Minnesota is through a TODD, or a Transfer On Death Deed. However, a TODD is unique to the transfer of property process through non probate means because it is limited to real estate.
This type of non probate transfer conveys or assigns an interest in real property, including a mortgage, judgment, or any other lien on real property, to a grantee beneficiary and expressly states the deed is only effective on the death of one or more of the grantor owners, transfers the interest to the grantee beneficiary upon the death of the grantor owner upon whose death the conveyance or transfer is stated to be effective.
Therefore, please consider the above referenced opportunities when considering the non probate process when transferring property rights in Minnesota.