THE ROLE OF AFFIDAVIT OF DEATH RECORDINGS IN MISSOURI
Affidavit of Death recordings in Missouri are a necessary part of clearing up titling for properties when a property owner has passed away.
This article will discuss the two types of Affidavits of Death, their purpose, when they must be filed and what must be contained within them.
AFFIDAVIT OF DEATH OF JOINT TENANT
The first type of affidavit is the Affidavit of Death of Joint Tenant.
When a property is owned by two or more owners and one of the owners dies, an Affidavit of Death of Joint Tenant must be recorded in the Recorder’s Office where the property sits.
This is a necessary step after the death of one joint tenant owner to notify the world that they have passed away and to clarify who are the remaining owner or owners.
In Missouri, an Affidavit of Death of Joint Tenant is a sworn and notarized statement which must be executed by someone with personal knowledge of the matter. The document is then properly recorded (usually e-recorded by the attorney’s office) so that a public record of the passing of the joint tenant is now in the title record of the property in question.
The most common example of when an Affidavit of Death of Joint Tenant needs to be recorded is when a married couple own their home as joint tenants and the first spouse has passed away. The surviving spouse can clear up title by recording the affidavit.
Once the affidavit of death is recorded, the Assessor’s Office will also update the current ownership in the property tax records.
AFFIDAVIT OF DEATH
The second type of affidavit is the Affidavit of Death.
When a property is only owned by an individual and they pass away, an Affidavit of Death must be recorded.
The requirements within the document are the same as with Affidavit of Death of Joint Tenant, as are the execution and recording requirements.
The most common example of this is when the surviving spouse has passed away, leaving no living owner. When there is a beneficiary deed St. Charles recorded in advance, the Affidavit of Death will state this and therefore this type of affidavit, once recorded, has the effect of perfecting title in the grantee under the previously recorded beneficiary deed.
Once that is done, title will vest in the grantee and they can do whatever they’d like with the property. If there is a mortgage, the new owner, just like the original owner, has an equity interest in the property and must either assume the existing mortgage or refinance it.
If their intent is to sell the property, they can then hire a realtor and the mortgage can be paid off at closing, just as it would be in a normal real estate transaction.
Affidavit of Death recordings are necessary documents to be prepared, executed and recorded to perfect title when the owner or one of the owners has passed away.
It’s also a relatively inexpensive document to have prepared and recorded and should be left to be handled by an experienced probate attorney near you.
A deed attorney St. Peters can prepare this type of affidavit and include the proper information, including the date of death, the legal description for the property, the prior conveyance by which the ownership interest was created.