Is Delivery and Acceptance of the Deed Required?
The statute specifically states that notice or delivery to or acceptance of the deed by the designated beneficiary is not required.
Is it Possible to Name More Than One Beneficiary?
Yes. It is possible to name more than one beneficiary, but you should proceed with caution.
The statute provides that if you name more than one beneficiary, each beneficiary will inherit the property in equal and undivided shares with no right of survivorship.
In plain English, this means that you may not leave varying percentages to several individuals. All will inherit an equal share of the property. For example, if you name two beneficiaries, each would inherit a 50% share. If you name four beneficiaries, each would inherit a 25% share. You can’t give one beneficiary a 50% share and two other beneficiaries a 25% share.
Since the statute specifies that there is no right of survivorship, it also means that if you name multiple beneficiaries and one of them dies before you, the deceased beneficiary’s share will not pass to the other surviving beneficiaries.
Therefore, in most cases, it is still prudent to have a Will specifying what should happen to the property if the beneficiary or beneficiaries listed on the Transfer on Death Deed are not living.
Should a Spouse be Named as Primary Beneficiary if Property is Jointly Owned?
The answer to this question depends on whether you own your property as tenants in common or joint tenants with rights of survivorship.
Most couples who own property jointly in Texas own the property as tenants in common. If property is owned as tenants in common and one of the owners dies, the other owner will not automatically inherit the property. In such a situation, it would be necessary to name your spouse as the primary beneficiary for your interest in the property to pass to him or her.