10 NEW IL Beneficiary Deed Benefits

December 23rd, 2011 News
  1. If you are an Illinois residential real property owner, beginning January 1, 2012, you can designate a beneficiary to receive your home, condo or co-op, upon your death, much the same way you can name beneficiaries for your life insurance policies and financial accounts thanks to the new “Beneficiary Deed” law.
  2. Even though a “Beneficiary Deed” shares many qualities of a traditional deed, it is not actually a deed.  At David E. Trice, Attorney at Law, we use the term Beneficiary Deed, because we find it to be a more pleasant and accessible way to say Transfer on Death Instrument.
  3. The purpose of the law is to give Illinois homeowners a convenient way to pass residential real property outside of probate court upon the death of the homeowner.
  4. In general, most Illinois residential real property can pass by “Beneficiary Deed”, including:  SINGLE FAMILY HOMES; APARTMENT BUILDINGS WITH FOUR FLATS OR LESS; AND CONDO and CO-OP UNITS.
  5. Because death is the triggering mechanism that transfers the real property interest, only a natural person who owns the appropriate type of real property can effectuate a Beneficiary Deed in Illinois. However, basically, any entity that can legally hold an interest in Illinois real property can be the beneficiary of your Beneficiary Deed, including: people, corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, estates,  trusts and charitable organizations.
  6. You can name single or multiple beneficiaries; and create a contingency plan in case your beneficiary disclaims your bequest or precedes you in death.
  7. Unlike your Will or Trust, which you could misplace, your Beneficiary Deed is publicly and permanently recorded.
  8. If you change your mind about your beneficiary, your Beneficiary Deed can always be revoked.
  9. Because a Beneficiary Deed does not transfer your property interest during your lifetime, no ownership interest or control over your property transfers to your beneficiary until after your death.
  10. Beneficiaries can easily accept the transfer of the property you have given them without the bother, burden and expense of the probate process.

The list above reflects just a few benefits of the new “Beneficiary Deed” law in Illinois. Your circumstances are unique, so an “Illinois Transfer on Death Instrument” may not be right for you. If you want an estate plan that fits your needs and situation, call David E. Trice, Attorney at Law at (773) 233-3303 to structure your estate plan your way.