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Major Shift of Certain Real Property Transfers Signed into Law

Recently signed legislation allows for the transfer of real property upon death through what is touted to be, under certain circumstances, a more streamlined and simple process, without the typical probate proceedings. Historically, many assets, such as stocks or bank accounts and even possessions, could be passed on to an identified beneficiary through the completion of a ‘Payable on Death’ or ‘Transfer on Death’ form (POD or TOD, respectively). The new legislation, AB 139, permits a similar transfer of real property, such as a house, land or other type of building, upon the death of an owner through the same process. AB 139 is effective now through January 1, 2021 (there is a five year test period to gauge the law’s impact).

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