If you're going through a divorce, your spouse may ask you to sign a quit claim deed and move out of your home. Before signing your name on this document, however, make sure you fully understand how a quit claim deed works and all of its ramifications.
What Is a Quit Claim Deed?
A quit claim deed is a legal document used to transfer ownership of a property to another individual. Often, two individuals will purchase a home together and put both of their names on the real estate deed. As time passes, one party may decide to leave the home and give up all interest in the property. Before this individual can take his name off the deed and give up ownership, he must sign a quit claim and transfer complete ownership to the remaining owner.
Why Sign a Quit Claim Deed?
If you elect to remain in a house after a divorce or after another owner moves from the property, having this person sign a quit claim deed can serve as a protection for you. Without signing away rights or ownership to the property, this person can make a claim on the property in the future, even though he no longer lives in the home or pays the mortgage payment. If you were to sell the home in the future, this person could contest the sale of the property.
Does a Quit Claim Remove Name From Mortgage?
Signing a quit claim deed does not remove your name from the mortgage deed. As long as your name remains on the home loan with the mortgage lender, the lender can seek payment from you. If you have agreed to sign a quit claim and give up ownership, it's beneficial for the remaining home owner to refinance the mortgage and have the loan rewritten in his name only.
Are Quit Claims Reversible?
If a couple reconcile, the sole owner of a property can choose to add the other person's name back on the mortgage title. However, if the owner refuses to update the title and give back ownership of the property, the individual who signed the quit claim deed cannot reverse the transfer, unless she can prove that she was forced or tricked into signing the document.