How to Transfer Property Out of Trust

By Phil M. Fowler
Property Out, Trust
house image by hans slegers from

When you create a trust, you have to put property into the trust. You accomplish this by transferring legal title to the trustee. After the trust is created, the trustee holds legal title to the trust property, while the beneficiaries hold equitable title. Equitable title simply means the beneficiaries have an interest in the property, as described in the trust document. To transfer property out of the trust, you need the trustee to sign a written document transferring the property to the new owner. Only the trustee can transfer title out of the trust.

Review the trust document to see how the property must be handled and disbursed. All trusts are different, and you need to know whether there is a restriction on transferring the property. For example, if the trust says House must go to Son, then the trustee is not authorized to transfer House to Daughter.

Remove the property from the trust schedule by either deleting the property from the existing schedule, or even better, creating a new trust schedule to replace the former trust schedule. This is simply a matter of typing a new trust schedule and stapling it to the trust document in place of the former trust schedule.

Prepare an assignment or deed of property. An assignment of property works for personal property, while a deed is necessary for real estate.

Have the trustee sign and date the assignment or deed of property. For a deed, you will also need to have a public notary verify the trustee's signature on the deed.

Record the signed deed with the county recorder's office. This step is only necessary for transferring real estate, and you will have to pay a minimal recording fee, probably around $10. Anybody can record the deed as long as it has been signed and notarized.

About the Author

The Constitution Guru has worked as a writer and editor for "BYU Law Review" and "BYU Journal of Public Law." He is an experienced attorney with a law degree and a B.A. degree in history with an emphasis on U.S. Constitutional history, both earned at Brigham Young University.