What is a Quitclaim Deed in New York?

Posted on December 5, 2022

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In New York, filing a quitclaim deed (or quit claim) is one of the fastest ways to transfer property ownership. A quitclaim deed is a type of deed that allows a grantor to transfer any interests they may have in the ownership of a property to a grantee without the need for a title search or title insurance. While this may be an efficient way for a property to change hands and indeed a useful tool in some cases, a quitclaim deed provides the least security in the hierarchy of real estate deeds in New York. 

To learn more about quitclaim deeds and whether they are the right choice for your real estate transaction, it is important to consult with an experienced New York City real estate attorney. At Avenue Law Firm, we provide quality legal counsel in matters of real property law to New Yorkers. We may be able to help you with understanding the legal processes involved with a quitclaim deed and in drafting your documents. Call us today at (212) 729-4090 to schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our skilled New York quitclaim deed attorneys.

Quitclaim Deeds in New York Defined

Quitclaim deeds are legal documents that transfer the grantor/’s ownership interest in a real estate property to a grantee. As referred to, the grantor “quits” any “claim” they have on a property. It can also be used in cases where there are issues with the original title of a property.

However, a grantor quitting their claim on a property does not mean that the grantee will have sole ownership. Filing a quitclaim deed only means that the grantor is relinquishing ownership of their share of the property. If the property is owned by two or more people and one person quitclaims their share to another person, they can only quitclaim and transfer the share they own. 

A quitclaim deed gives no warranties or guarantees to the grantee. A quitclaim deed also does not require a title search or insurance nor does it provide actual proof that the grantor has a relationship with the property. Quitclaim deeds only serve as proof that the grantor is transferring any sort of relationship they have on the property to the grantee.

In comparison to other deeds, a quitclaim deed provides the least security and should not be used in real estate transactions with valuable payment. When a property changes hands through a quitclaim deed, no consideration is given as to whether there are any liens or encumbrances. After a quitclaim deed is recorded, it may be difficult to hold a grantor liable for any issues with the ownership. This makes it important to only agree to a quitclaim deed if you trust that the grantor has ownership of the property.

While a quitclaim deed may not be advisable to use in actual real estate transactions, it may still be useful in the following situations:

  • Giving a spouse co-ownership of a property after a marriage
  • Giving an ex-spouse sole ownership of a property after a divorce
  • Transferring a co-owner’s interest in a commercial property to another co-owner
  • Transferring ownership of a property to a family member
  • Transferring ownership of a property to a revocable trust

It is also important to note that a quitclaim deed does not change or affect the liability on any mortgages on the property. If you are a grantor filing a quitclaim deed, you may want to make sure that your name would be excluded from any liability on mortgages related to the property that you quitclaimed. 

This also applies to any taxes owed on the property. If the transfer is being conducted as part of a gift, a gift tax might be owed. Taxes such as capital gains tax might also be owed on the property. The matter of who should pay taxes should be a part of the discussion before a quitclaim deed is filed. To ensure that you won’t have any tax liabilities on the property you will be receiving as a grantee, consider getting the help of an experienced New York real estate attorney. 

At Avenue Law Firm, our team of New York real estate attorneys is dedicated to providing quality legal counsel when it comes to real estate transactions. We may be able to help you by doing due diligence on your property and determining any legal issues you may face. Contact us today at (212) 729-4090 to schedule a free consultation.

How do you file a quitclaim deed form in New York?

As with any real estate transaction, the filing of a quitclaim deed requires several steps. It is important to make sure that the steps are strictly followed to avoid wasting time and money. 

Drafting

For a quitclaim deed in NY to be valid, it needs to be in writing. The document would also need to include the following details:

  • A legal description and address of the property being deeded
  • The county the property is located in
  • The date of the transfer
  • The grantor’s (person relinquishing ownership) name
  • The grantee’s (person receiving ownership) name
  • The amount of the price paid for the transfer, if any

Real Property Law § 258 of the New York state legislation dictates how quitclaim deeds should be written. 

QUITCLAIM DEED.

Statutory Form D. (Individual)

This indenture, made the ……. day of ……….., 20……..,
between ……………, (insert residence), party of

the first part, and ………….., (insert residence), party of the

second part:

Witnesseth, that the party of the first part, in consideration of

………… dollars, lawful money of the United States, paid by the

party of the second part, does hereby remise, release, and quitclaim

unto the party of the second part, …………… and assigns forever,

all (description), together with the appurtenances and all the estate

and rights of the party of the first part in and to said premises.

To have and to hold the premises herein granted unto the party of the

second part, ………… and assigns forever.

In witness whereof, the party of the first part has hereunto set his

hand and seal the day and year first above written.

In presence of:

The grantor must sign the deed and have it acknowledged before a notary. The deed must be stamped and signed by the notary as a confirmation of the grantor’s authentic signature. Once the grantee receives the document, acknowledgment of the acceptance in writing may also be necessary.

Depending on the county, the additional details of the deed may need to be verified such as the description of your property. To ensure that the information on your quitclaim deed is accurate and would be legally binding, you may also ask a qualified New York real estate attorney to fill it out for you.

Recording

To ensure that the quitclaim deed is effective against other people seeking to get ownership of the property, it must be filed per the rules of the County Clerk or City Registrar of the locale where the property is located. 

A quitclaim deed does not expire. However, if a deed is filed twice from the same grantor, the deed of the person who recorded it first will take precedence. As such, it is important to make sure to file a quitclaim deed as soon as possible.

Filing

In addition to the quitclaim deed, you must also fill out two additional forms. The location of your property will determine which forms you need to file.

If the property is located in NYC:

Quitclaim deeds on properties located in New York City may be filed online using the Automated City Register Information System (ACRIS)

If the property is located outside of NYC:

It is important to note that the RP-5217-PDF cannot be a handwritten or a typewriter-entry document. The downloadable PDF versions allow the direct editing of the documents through the use of a computer or a mobile device.

The fees involved in filing a quitclaim deed depend on the type of real estate being transferred. Filing a deed for a farm or residential property typically costs $125 and $250 for other types of property. There may be additional fees involved when filing your forms. It is best to consult an experienced New York real estate attorney to get an estimate of how much the process of filing a quitclaim deed may cost.

Should I use a quitclaim deed for my real estate transaction?

Whether you should use a quitclaim deed to transfer ownership of property depends on your specific case. Quitclaim deeds are still a quick and effective way to transfer property when you are sure that the person acting as the grantor and executing the exchange has the right to give you the property. Regardless, it is a wise decision to immediately file a quitclaim deed as soon as possible to make sure that your document takes precedence over any deed the grantor might initiate over the same property.

It is also a good idea to consult a skilled New York real estate attorney to prepare your quitclaim deed and accompanying documents and to make sure that it is filed with the right offices. At Avenue Law Firm, we have assisted and facilitated the transfer of ownership for properties in and out of New York City. Our team of experienced New York real estate attorneys may be able to help you in making sure that your rights are protected and your best interests are kept in mind during the transaction. Contact us at (212) 729-4090 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.

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