A common concern of Florida residents as they plan their estate is how their heirs can avoid probate. Probate can be expensive and time-consuming for your beneficiaries and can delay the transfer of property that you wish to pass on to them after your death. There are many ways to avoid probate with your estate, depending on the particulars of your assets. However, at the Millman Law Group, we often recommend Enhanced Life Estate Deeds, or Ladybird Deeds, as a simple and cost-effective method for avoiding probate. Below are the answers to a few common questions regarding the use of Enhanced Life Estate Deeds in Florida.
What Is a Florida Life Estate Deed?
A standard Life Estate Deed is an irrevocable transfer of your property to beneficiaries while reserving ownership and the right to use your property during your lifetime. This type of transfer avoids probate upon death while retaining your ownership interest as you live. The primary concern with this deed is that the gift is irrevocably transferring an interest to the grantee. If conflicts occur with the grantee, and you want to sell or mortgage the property, you are no longer the sole property owner. This means the standard Life Estate Deed is not very flexible. Instead, an Enhanced Life Estate Deed may be recommended.
What Is an “Enhanced” Life Estate Deed?
The Enhanced Life Estate Deed, or “Lady Bird Deed,” is a type of deed that transfers property to a grantee while the grantor retains the ability to live on the property during their lifetime. The deed also provides flexibility by allowing the grantor to change their mind, mortgage the property, sell it, or do whatever they want with it during their lifetime. Only upon death does the grantee have ownership interest, giving them full ownership of the property. The grantee has no rights in the property while the grantor is alive. This means that the grantor does not require the beneficiary’s consent to make a decision about the property.
Are There Any Drawbacks to Enhanced Life Estate Deeds in Florida?
There is the potential for issues with Enhanced Life Estate Deeds in Florida. If the designated remainder interest dies before the grantor, the deed may need to be redone. Next, if multiple remainders are identified, they will inherit the property together. Additionally, the process can be complicated if the vested remainder is a minor child. However, Enhanced Life Estate Deeds can be carefully written and planned with an estate planning attorney to account for potential issues.
What Are the Primary Benefits of Ladybird Deeds?
Ultimately, Enhanced Life Estate Deeds (Lady Bird Deeds) are an excellent tool for most households in Florida. When using this estate planning tool, you can avoid probate costs and associated attorney fees and increase the speed at which the transfer of ownership occurs. The property is transferred automatically when using Enhanced Life Estate Deeds in Florida. If you are interested in using this efficient tool, contact your estate planning attorney at The Millman Law Group today.
Estate Planning Made Easy With Millman Law Group
Millman Law Group, PLLC is rare because it’s one of the only law firms that offer life planning in South Florida. From life care planning to the preparation of detailed estate plans, Millman Law Group has committed to serving Floridian elderly communities in Boca Raton, Palm Beach County, Ocean Ridge, Hillsboro Beach, and many other areas since 2018. Our dedicated team also specializes in special needs Trusts and catering to any age demographic because we know for certain it’s never too early to start preparing you and your family for your future. For the latest news in estate planning and elder care law, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, and Pinterest. You can also contact us at 561-463-6480.