The main purpose of California quitclaim deeds is to relinquish rights or interests from one person to another, usually family members or spouses. In other words, a quitclaim deed transfers whatever interest an individual has in the property and no more.
California quitclaim deeds differ from grant deeds in that a quitclaim deed has no warranties or guarantees of title. A quitclaim deed is utilized in certain situations usually involving family members. For instance, one spouse may use a quitclaim deed to transfer any interest he or she may have in property to another spouse. The deed may even be required by the divorce court as part of a property settlement. A quitclaim deed may be used to transfer property into a living trust.
The quitclaim deed, as all deeds, requires a legal description of the property. Although it is a fairly simple deed to complete, it does require a proper legal description, which the parties may not have or understand. Care should be taken to obtain the property's proper legal description.
Consideration or money received for the quitclaim deed may be a problem. Without noted consideration on the deed or county documentation, the quitclaim will be viewed as a gift deed and/or a gift, which may not be intended. If there is consideration given for the quitclaim deed, tax consequences should be considered.
Another issue that quitclaim deeds present are their affect on the property's mortgage agreement, which should be read carefully. If the property has a mortgage, proper care should be taken to either address the property's mortgage requirements or contact the mortgage holder when needed. Otherwise, a quitclaim deed could be deemed a default of mortgage and foreclosure may result.