Create Your Free California Quitclaim Deed

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Create Your Free Quitclaim Deed

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Quitclaim Deed


Your Quitclaim Deed

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Recording requested by (name):

When recorded, mail this deed and tax
statements to (name and address):




Assessor’s Parcel No.: ___________________

EXEMPTION (R&T CODE) __________________
EXPLANATION ___________________________
Signature of Declarant or Agent determining tax

FOR A VALUABLE CONSIDERATION, receipt of which is hereby acknowledged, ___________________,  of ___________________, (the "Grantor"), hereby remise and release, as well as quitclaim, unto ___________________, not married, of ___________________, (the "Grantee"), the following described real property in the County of ___________________, State of California (the "Land"):


Date: ________________ ____, ________


A notary public or other officer completing this certificate verifies only the identity of the individual who signed the document to which this certificate is attached, and not the truthfulness, accuracy, or validity of that document.

STATE OF CALIFORNIA                                      }
COUNTY OF _____________________________}

                       On _____________________________________ before me, ______________________________________ ,
                                                                                                                            (insert name and title of the officer)

                       personally appeared ___________________, who proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person(s) whose name(s) is/are subscribed to the within instrument and acknowledged to me that he/she/they executed the same in his/their/her authorized capacity(ies), and that by his/her/their signatures(s) on the instrument the person(s), or the entity upon behalf of which the person(s) acted, executed the instrument.

                       I certify under PENALTY OF PERJURY under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing paragraph is true and correct.

                       WITNESS my hand and official seal.

                       Signature ___________________________________   (seal)

Last updated February 16, 2023

Quitclaim Deeds in California

A California Quitclaim Deed transfers an owner’s interest in real property without guaranteeing the title is free and clear. The owner transferring interest is known as the grantor, and the recipient is the grantee.

Since there isn’t a title guarantee, the grantee must trust the grantor completely. Therefore, people with established relationships, such as family members or friends, use Quitclaim Deeds the most. In these cases, a Quitclaim Deed is a fast and easy way for Californians to transfer real estate ownership.

Our template is valid for residential and commercial real estate in all California counties. If you want to guarantee that a property’s title is free and clear, use our Warranty Deed (Grant Deed) instead.

How do Quitclaim Deeds work in California?

A Quitclaim Deed only transfers the interest that someone owns. So, if someone owns a house in California with their spouse, they can only transfer their half. However, the spouses can use a single Quitclaim Deed to transfer both their interests.

When a grantor uses a Quitclaim Deed in California, they do not make any guarantees that the property’s title is free of liens or encumbrances, such as a mortgage or Mechanic’s Lien. In other words, this means the grantee won’t have any warranties.

Without a warranty of title, the grantee will have no legal rights against the grantor if there is an issue with the property title, meaning the grantor can't be held liable for any damages the grantee incurs. It provides the least protection to recipients of real property.

Common uses of Quitclaim Deeds in California

As stated above, Quitclaim Deeds provide no warranties. Hence, Californians usually use them in low-risk situations, such as the following:

  • Transferring property interest to a family member (e.g., a parent gifting a house to their child)
  • Transferring property interest from a trust (e.g., a beneficiary receiving a house from a Living Trust)
  • Transferring property interest to an organization
  • Adding a spouse's name to a property title after marriage
  • Removing a spouse's name from a title during divorce
  • Fixing a defect on a property title, such as a misspelled name

Although it's less common, Quitclaim Deeds can also be used in riskier situations, such as when selling or buying real estate. Remember, Quitclaim Deed forms are only suitable in sales where the buyer completely trusts the seller.

Taxes and Quitclaim Deeds in California

When a grantor transfers interest using a Quitclaim Deed, they must pay any unpaid property taxes from previous years before the grantee can receive the property.

Quitclaim Deeds are mostly used for transactions that don't involve payment. In these cases, a gift tax may apply. If you’re subject to gift tax, you must file a United States Gift (and Generation-Skipping Transfer) Tax Return (Form 709). There are exemptions to gift taxes. For example, property transfers to a spouse are not taxable gifts.

Those using a Quitclaim Deed in California could also be subject to a documentary transfer tax. California’s Documentary Transfer Tax Act allows counties and cities to collect tax on documents that transfer real property. Often, this tax is charged as a fee upon filing. Like with gift taxes, there are exemptions to documentary transfer tax, such as transfers resulting from a grantor's death.

How do Quitclaim Deeds affect mortgages in California?

Although it changes the names on a property title, a Quitclaim Deed does not change the names on a mortgage or eliminate one's mortgage responsibilities.

If you own a house in California and add your new spouse to the title with a Quitclaim Deed, their name won’t suddenly appear on your mortgage. To add them to your mortgage, you must contact your mortgage lender and inquire about refinancing in both of your names.

Likewise, suppose you separate from and divorce your spouse, who is remaining in the marital home and taking full responsibility for all future mortgage payments. If you use a Quitclaim Deed to remove your name from the title, your mortgage lender could still hold you responsible. While following the outcome of your divorce, you must work with the mortgage lender to remove your name and eliminate your liability.

Do Quitclaim Deeds have to be notarized in California?

Yes, Quitclaim Deeds must be notarized before they can be recorded and filed. To execute the Quitclaim Deed, you must sign it in front of an in-person or online notary public.

Filing a Quitclaim Deed in California

Once you’ve created a Quitclaim Deed and signed it in the presence of a notary public, you must file it with your local County Clerk or Registry Office. Filing your deed ensures that it becomes part of the public record so that the grantee will be listed as the property’s legal owner.

In addition, you’ll likely have to file a Preliminary Change of Ownership Report and fill out a Documentary Transfer Tax form or an exemption form. You can find these forms at your local County Clerk or Registry Office or on their websites listed below.

In California, the recording fees for filing a Quitclaim Deed vary among counties. For example, Los Angeles county’s recording fee is a base of $15.00 plus $3.00 for each additional page. There are additional fees that can equal up to approximately $89.00.

To find out more information about filing a Quitclaim Deed, visit the website of your County Clerk or Registry Office.

Alameda County Orange County
Alpine County Placer County
Amador County Plumas County
Butte County Riverside County
Calaveras County Sacramento County
Colusa County San Benito County
Contra Costa County San Bernardino County
Del Norte County San Diego County
El Dorado County San Francisco City and County
Fresno County San Joaquin County
Glenn County San Luis Obispo County
Humboldt County San Mateo County
Imperial County Santa Barbara County
Inyo County Santa Clara County
Kern County Santa Cruz County
Kings County Shasta County
Lake County Sierra County
Lassen County Siskiyou County
Los Angeles County Solano County
Madera County Sonoma County
Marin County Stanislaus County
Mariposa County Sutter County
Mendocino County Tehama County
Merced County Trinity County
Modoc County Tulare County
Mono County Tuolumne County
Monterey County Ventura County
Napa County Yolo County
Nevada County Yuba County

Related documents

  • Warranty Deed: Transfer property with the guarantee of a clear title
  • Survivorship Deed: Ensure that a joint tenant receives the remaining property interest when the other passes away.
  • Contract for Deed/Land Contract: Outline a seller-financed real estate transaction in which the seller retains the property title until the buyer pays them back.
  • Gift Deed: Transfer a gift of money, shares, stocks, real property, or personal property to another party.
Thumbnail of a sample document of a quitclaim deed for property in California


California Quitclaim Deed

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