HB 703

84(R) - 2015
Senate Health & Human Services
Senate Health & Human Services

Vote Recommendation

  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Neutral
  • Positive
  • Positive


Jessica Farrar


James Keffer
Justin Rodriguez

Bill Caption

Relating to authorizing a revocable deed that transfers real property at the transferor's death.

Fiscal Notes

No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.

Bill Analysis

The bill would create a new chapter 114, Estates Code, to establish the Texas Real Property Transfer on Death Act. The bill would authorize a revocable "transfer on death deed" to be used by an individual to transfer his interest in real property to one or more beneficiaries effective at the time of his death. The deed would not be considered a testamentary instrument.

The bill includes provisions for: requirements for the elements, formalities and recording of the deed; revoking the deed; the effect of the deed and liability of transferred property for creditors' claims; transfers of property subject to liens and encumbrances; disclaimer of the property by the beneficiary; and liability for creditor claims and family allowances. 

The bill also provides a suggested form for Transfer on Death Deed and instructions for completing the form.

Vote Recommendation Notes

According to the bill's analysis there may exist a growing number of Texans who cannot afford to hire an attorney, or find the time to seek legal counsel concerning, a last will and testament. HB 703 presents a low-cost alternative: a transfer on death (or TOD) deed.

Though lacking the full force of a testament, a TOD may substitute for a will in estate considerations, and allows for a transfer of real property from one generation to the next via naming a beneficiary -- all without the need to go through a probate administration or court. This reduces strain on our legal system and increases the individual liberty of those wishing to leave behind property to their progeny, and we support this bill.