Missouri Quit Claim Deed Form – Summary

The Missouri quit claim deed form gives the new owner whatever interest the current owner has in the property when the deed is signed and delivered. It makes no promises about whether the current owner has clear title to the property. In Missouri, quit claim deeds are often used if the property is being transferred:

  • To a spouse or other family member as a gift;
  • To an ex-spouse following a 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 (adding someone to the deed);
  • From someone who no longer wishes to hold title (removing someone from the deed); or
  • In other circumstances where the current owner does not want to be legally responsible for problems with title.

Special language is required to ensure that the deed qualifies as a quit claim deed. This language is automatically included by our deed preparation service and valid in all Missouri counties. Get Deed

How a Missouri Quit Claim Deed Form Works

What is a Missouri Quit Claim Deed?

A Missouri quit claim deed form (sometimes called a quick claim deed or quit claim deed) transfers Missouri real estate from the current owner (grantor) to the new owner (grantee) with no warranty of title. The grantee acquires whatever interest the grantor had in the property, but accepts title “as is.” If it turns out that there is a problem with title to the property—or even if the grantor did not even own the property—the grantee has no recourse against the grantor.

Other Names for a Missouri Quit Claim Deed Form

A Missouri quit claim deed is often called a quitclaim deed form (with no space in quitclaim). These two terms are interchangeable and both can be correct.

It is a common mistake to refer to a quit claim deed as a quick claim deed, but that is always incorrect. There is no such thing as a quick claim deed.

Because of the role of title insurance in real estate sales, title insurance companies often dictate what type of deed will work in that state. In some states—including Texas and North Carolina—title insurance companies disfavor quit claim deeds. In those states, a deed without warranty or no warranty deed may be used in lieu of a quit claim deed to transfer title with no warranty of title. Because quit claim deeds are common in Missouri, these other forms of deed are unnecessary.

Relationship of Quit Claim Deed Form to Warranty of Title

Key Term: Warranty of Title. Title issues can be caused by many things, including errors in the public record, unknown liens against the property, undisclosed prior conveyances, forged deeds, missing heirs or unprobated wills, or disputes about boundary lines or surveys. Title issues often require legal action to fix and can decrease the value of real estate. If the property has no title issues, it is said to have clear title. A warranty of title is a legal guarantee from the transferor to the transferee that there are no title issues. If a deed makes a warranty of title, the transferee can sue the transferor over any title issues.

The defining feature of a quit claim deed form is the lack of a warranty of title. A grantor that transfers property by quitclaim deed is not legally responsible for title issues, and a grantee that receives property by quitclaim deed takes the property “as is” with no warranty of title.

Example: Adair conveys property to Barry by quitclaim deed. A few months after the conveyance, Barry learns that Adair sold half of the property to Carter three years earlier and thus did not have clear title to the entire property. Because Adair used a quitclaim deed, Adair is not legally responsible for transferring property that she didn’t own, and Barry may not sue Adair for failure to convey clear title to the property.

The lack of warranty of title distinguishes a Missouri quitclaim deed form from two other Missouri deeds that include a warranty of title:

  1. Missouri Warranty Deed Form – A Missouri warranty deed form includes a full warranty of title. The grantor is responsible for all title issues, including those that arose before the grantor owned the property.
  2. Missouri Special Warranty Deed Form – A Missouri special warranty deed form provides a limited warranty of title. The grantor is only responsible for title issues that arose while the grantor owned the property.

A Missouri quitclaim deed is also distinct from two other deed forms that are named after their ability to avoid probate:

  1. Missouri Life Estate Deed Form – A life estate deed divides the property into two different The life tenant holds a life estate that entitles the life tenant to use the property for life. The remainder beneficiaries hold a remainder interest that, although considered a present interest, does not become possessory until the life tenant’s death. The life tenant cannot sell, mortgage, or otherwise deal with the property without the consent and signature of the remainder beneficiaries.
  2. Missouri Beneficiary Deed Form – A beneficiary deed—also known as a transfer on death deed or TOD deed—is a newer form of deed that, like a life estate deed, avoids probate at an owner’s death. But unlike a life estate deed, the owner retains complete control over the property during his or her life. The owner can sell or mortgage the property, or even change or revoke the beneficiary designation, without the consent or involvement of the beneficiaries.

Although a quitclaim deed may be thought of as a different type of deed than a life estate deed, there is some overlap. Because a life estate deed can be drafted to include or exclude a warranty of title, a life estate deed may also be a quitclaim deed, special warranty deed, or warranty deed.

Common Uses of Quit Claim Deeds

Quit claim deeds allocate risk to the grantee. If the grantee is paying for the property, the grantee will usually require a deed form that provides some guarantee of title. For this reason, quit claim deed are rarely used in sale transactions between unrelated parties. Instead, they are most often used where there is a relationship between the parties. Common examples include:

  • Transferring property to an ex-spouse after a divorce;
  • Transferring property by gift (without consideration);
  • Transferring property to children or other family members;
  • Adding a spouse or family member to a deed with survivorship rights to avoid probate at death; and
  • Transferring property to an LLC or living trust owned or managed by the grantor.

Quitclaim deeds are versatile and can be used in other situations where the grantor does not want to be responsible for title problems and the grantee doesn’t mind assuming the risk.

How to Create a Missouri Quit Claim Deed

A Missouri quit claim deed must be carefully drafted to include the right vesting language and warranty of title. The deed must also meet the requirements that apply to other Missouri deeds, including a valid legal description, statement of consideration, and a description of the manner in which co-owners will hold title, font size and page format requirements, and signature and notarization requirements.

Because even slight differences in language—sometimes only a single word—can result in a different deed form, it is important to get the language right. Each deed used by our deed preparation service was attorney-designed to meet the requirements of Missouri law.