I want to put my child’s name on the deed to my house with mine.

Do I need a lawyer or can i just go to the County Clerks Office? I have had my home for 40 years. I got married 15 years ago. My husband sold his house and gave his money to his kids from the sale. I want my daughter to get my house. Can I just add her name to the deed? Do I need my husbands permission fr this even though it’s my house.

A: Yes it can be done. While the best practice for a 2nd marriage where both have their own property would be to have a pre nuptual agreement whereby you and your husband agree as to what rights you have in each others estates if this was not done then a post-nuptual (after marriage) agreement can also be used to clarify what you want to go to your daughter from your estate and his children from his estate and what happens to your joint property. If this type of agreement is not an option you could still insure that your daughter gets this property by deeding it to her.

If the property is solely in your name (deed is in your name alone) you can put your daughter’s name on the deed without your husband’s permission. If you want to retain some control you could have both of your names on the deed (you and daughter) and then you would prepare the deed to read JOINT TENANTS WITH RIGHT OF SURVIVORSHIP so if you died the house would automatically go to your daughter.

Another way to go would be to deed it to your daughter and retain a life estate whereby you have the right to live in the house until your death (you could also have the same right best in your husband to prevent him from having to leave the house if you died first).

While deeding the property into your daughter can certainly be done, it is important to look at tax and estate planning considerations before going ahead with the transfer. There may also be real estate tax exemptions that are affected and if the house has a mortgage against it a transfer may trigger a due on transfer clause.

You should speak to your attorney and accountant before executing a new deed.

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Steven T. Decker is an experienced real estate lawyer, author and speaker.  With over 20 years of experience, Steven represents individuals and investors in the purchase of residential and commercial real property.  Steven is the author of “The Five Myths that can Ruin the Purchase of Your Home” and he is the publisher of the “New York Real Estate Law Blog”.  If you are buying or selling a home or commercial property in Staten Island, New York City or New Jersey contact Steven T. Decker, Esq. to discuss the services that he offers and how his legal representation will assist you.

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