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Understanding the Power of Lady Bird Deeds in Estate Planning

Updated: May 3

When it comes to estate planning, individuals often seek effective ways to ensure their assets are distributed according to their wishes. One powerful tool in this realm is the Enhanced Life Estate Deed (more informally known as a  Lady Bird Deed.) This unique legal instrument can significantly impact the distribution of property upon one's passing. In this article, we'll explore the crucial question: Does a Lady Bird Deed supersede a will?


Lady Bird Deed Basics

To grasp the significance of a Lady Bird Deed, it's essential to understand its function. Essentially, a Lady Bird Deed allows the property owner, also known as the grantor, to add beneficiaries to real estate while retaining control and use of the property during their lifetime. The individual named to inherit the property is referred to as the remainderman.


Lady Bird Deed vs. Will

A Will must be administered through probate, whereas a Lady Bird Deed completely avoids the need for probate. The remainderman will become owner of the property immediately upon the Grantor’s passing. No matter who is designated in the will to receive the property, the Lady Bird Deed will take precedence over any devise made in a will. 


Exceptions for Married Couples

If spouses jointly own the marital property and only one is on the deed, attempting to use a Lady Bird Deed to disinherit the other spouse is not legally valid. However, in all other scenarios, the Lady Bird Deed prevails over the will.


The Importance of Understanding Lady Bird Deeds

In conclusion, the Lady Bird Deed is a powerful tool in Florida estate planning, providing a streamlined way to both avoid probate and add a beneficiary to real property while maintaining full control of that property during one's lifetime. Understanding its impact on wills and other assets is vital for anyone seeking clarity in their estate planning journey.


Call to Action

If you are navigating the complexities of estate planning in Florida, atCause Law Office is here to assist you. Our experienced Estate Planning Attorneys specialize in Florida estate planning, ensuring your wishes are legally protected. Contact us today at 727-477-2255 for personalized guidance on your estate planning needs. Your future deserves the attention to detail that atCause Law Office provides.


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