Alabama Quit Claim Deed Form
The Alabama Quit Claim Deed is the official form used for transferring residential property between two (2) parties. It makes it possible for one party (the “grantor”) to transfer their interest in a property to another party (the “grantee”). The deed differs from a general warranty in that it does not provide any guarantee to the grantee (the person getting transferred the property) that the grantor is the legal owner of the property. It is useful in situations where the grantee already has proof of the grantor’s ownership of the property, such as when a parent wishes to transfer property to their child.
Laws: §§ 35-4-1 to 35-4-435
Name and Address (§ 35-4-110): The deed must include both the name and address of the grantor in order to be successfully filed.
Marital Status (§ 15-4-73): The marital status of the grantor must be included in the document.
Age Requirement (§ 35-4-1): The grantor must be at least nineteen (19) years old.
Language Used (§ 35-4-271): Because the form does not include a warranty of title, the following three (3) words should not be used in the section of the form that addresses warranties:
The grantor is legally required to use alternative language that clearly represents their interest in the real property. For example, language such as “hereby quitclaim and convey” must be used.
Time Limitation of the Deed Delivery (§ 35-4-75) – If the deed does not state the time that it will be delivered or the circumstances it will be delivered under, state law requires that: the deed should be delivered at reasonable time proceeding the date in which the contract was entered into. The contract cannot be delivered after more than one (1) year.
Signing Requirements (§ 35-4-20) – The signing requirements are dependent on the manner in which the form is signed. It is mainly based on whether or not the grantor signs their name on the deed. If they can sign their name but choose not to, it will impact both a) who will sign the contract, and b) the number of witnesses required. In order to simplify understanding Alabama’s signing requirements, the following guide has been provided:
If the Grantor can sign their own name:
- The grantor must sign their name at the bottom of the form.
- The execution of the form must be signed by one (1) witness.
If the Grantor can sign their own name but they choose to use an authorized agent:
- In cases where the grantor will direct their agent to sign the form, the agent must have written authority to do so.
- The execution of the form must be attested by two (2) witnesses, both of whom must be capable of writing their own names.
- The two (2) witnesses are required to write their names as witnesses on the form.
If the Grantor is incapable of signing their own name:
- If the grantor is unable to sign their name, they may direct another party to do so on their behalf.
- This party must write the grantor’s name, and the words “his mark” must be written next to or over it.
- The execution of the form must be attested by two (2) witnesses who have writing abilities.
- The two (2) witnesses must write their names as witnesses on the form.
How to File
As outlined below, the form must be filed with Real Estate Sales Validation (Form RT-1) and any filing feeds must be paid, as detailed below.
Important Note: In accordance with (§ 35-4-90), Alabama upholds a notice recording act. This act was established to protect future bona fide purchasers who had no opportunity to learn of the fact that another party acquired title to the same property because that party failed to file a record of it. Consequently, even though the party who did not file a record of the deed may have acquired the property first, they will be forced to relinquish their ownership claim if another party purchases the same property without notice.
Additional Mandatory Document (§ 40-22-1): It is mandatory for the form, Real Estate Sales Validation (Form RT-1), to be filed at the same time as the deed. All relevant sections must be completed and subsequently signed by both parties.
Filing Fees (§ 40-22-1(c)): If the value of the property is five hundred dollars ($500) or less, a privilege or license tax of fifty cents ($0.50) will be charged for any executed deed. If the value of the property is more than five hundred dollars ($500), the tax will be fifty cents ($0.50) for every five-hundred dollars ($500) of value.