What is a quit claim deed and why do I need one if a house was acquired during the marriage but my spouse is not showing on the deed? A quitclaim deed in Alabama is a document that transfers ownership of an interest in a property from one party to another. The grantor is the party that is giving their ownership interest and the grantee is the party that is paying for the interest. Quitclaim deeds are the quickest way to transfer property from one person to another at a real estate closing in Alabama. Quitclaim deeds offer no protection to the buyer because it is only a means of transferring the interests as fast as possible.
In Alabama the quitclaim deed does not ensure that the current owner has clear title to the property. Quitclaim deeds are commonly used when the property is being transferred: to a spouse or other family member as a gift; to an ex-spouse during an Alabama uncontested divorce; to change the nature of marital property; to a living trust or business owned by the current owner; to someone who will own the property with the current owners; from someone who no longer wishes to hold title or in other circumstances where the current owner does not want to be legally responsible for problems with title.
Alabama quitclaim deeds are quite different from statutory warranty deeds and general warranty deeds. The two types of warranty deeds convey the property with a warranty of title. Under a statutory warranty deed, the current owner of the property guarantees that there were no issues with the title during the time that they possessed the property but does not guarantee that there were no issues with the title before they had possession of the property.
In contrast, under a general warranty deed the current owner guarantees that there are no issues with the title including any issue before the current owner acquired the property. Thus the main difference between a quitclaim deed is that there is no guarantee from the current owner that there are no defects in the title when passing ownership of the property.
One of the main reasons that couples will use a quitclaim deed during a divorce is to transfer the title to one spouse who will remain on the title and live in the house after a divorce or separation. The quitclaim deed is used during a Jefferson County divorce in order to change the ownership from joint ownership to sole ownership. The reason that you may need a quit claim deed for a house that was acquired during the marriage is to give one party the sole ownership of the property. This allows one party to sell or mortgage the property without the consent of the other party.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, probate, and real estate closings on this website. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply feedback. We appreciate our readers & love to hear from you!