Indiana Laws Regarding Property Deeds

Property deeds are used throughout the United States to convey ownership of real property. Most states treat the various types of property deeds in the same way. However, some states impose restrictions on the types of transfers that can be completed using a specific deed. Indiana recognizes warranty deeds and quitclaim deeds as forms of conveyance. Indiana laws for property deeds cover document standards for recording, forms and fees.

Types of Deeds

Warranty deeds and quitclaim deeds are commonly used in Indiana. Warranty deeds should be used when property is sold for a valuable consideration. The warranty deed implies a guarantee from the grantor that he holds a free and clear title to sell. Furthermore, the grantor will be held responsible to defend the title if a claim is made in the future.

Quitclaim deeds also function to convey ownership, but do not imply a warranty. When this type of deed is used, the grantor does not promise to hold a free and clear title, but does transfer the interest he has to another party. Quitclaim deeds are generally used to add or remove someone as an owner.

Real Estate Title

Title searchers, or abstractors, research property records to form a title report. This report lists a timeline of transactions that have occurred on the property. Generally, the information consists of the previous owners and the names of any mortgage lenders that were used. The title report may also list names of lien holders, such as taxing authorities. A lien can be placed on property if the owners fail to pay taxes. When a warranty deed is signed, there should be no outstanding liens or issues appearing on the title report.

Recording the Deeds

In order for a title report to be formed, all real estate documents must be filed with the county recorder. The recorder maintains property deeds, mortgages, liens, power of attorney documents, and other real estate related correspondence. Indiana has a three-step recording process. The Indiana State Sales Disclosure Form must be completed and signed by the seller and buyers. This form is submitted, with a fee, to the county auditor and assessor. Each reviews the form, verifies the property information is correct, and stamps the form with approval.

Next, the deed can be submitted to the recorder, where it will be filed with the land records. All deeds submitted for recording should list the correct names and mailing addresses for both the grantor and grantee. Additionally, a tax bill mailing address must be included on the deed. The document should be signed in the presence of a certified notary public.

Taxes and Fees

Indiana does not impose real property transfer tax on property deeds. However, the county auditor and assessor charge a fee to process the sales disclosure form. This fee is generally $15 for both. Real property taxes are applicable in Indiana, however. This is why the mailing address of the tax-bill recipient is necessary on the deed. Property tax rates are based on the assessed value of the home, determined by the county assessors. In Indiana, most property tax bills are due in May and November.