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Help Me Understand the Nebraska Transfer on Death (“TOD”) Deed

Nebraska has adopted a new method of transferring ownership of real estate upon the death of the owner. Effective January 1, 2013 we may now use a revocable transfer on death deed (“TOD Deed”) in Nebraska.

The TOD Deed will operate in a similar fashion to a payable on death (“POD”) bank account. The beneficiary will not have any ownership interest in the property during the life of the owner (transferor) and will only receive ownership when the owner dies (or in the case of joint tenancy ownership) when all of the owners have died.

I think this new TOD Deed will become a very useful tool for estate planning attorneys. One example would be for a parent who wants to put the name of a child on the deed to their real estate to avoid or minimize probate. This practice creates an ownership interest in favor of the child and can subject the real estate to the claims of your child’s creditors, including judgment and child support liens.

The new TOD Deed will become a good alternative to this practice because with the TOD Deed, the child is only a beneficiary and does not become an owner until the parent (owner) of the real estate has died.

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