Real Estate Deeds

South Carolina Trustee Deed

A trustee's deed transfers interest in real property held in a living trust.

A living (inter vivos) trust is an estate planning tool whereby a settlor transfers property to another (the trustee) for the benefit of a third (the beneficiary). The terms of a living trust are set forth in an unrecorded document executed by the settlor called the trust instrument (for testamentary trusts, the terms are established in the decedent's will). The trust's provisions establish the nature of the trust, designate a trustee, enumerate the trustee's powers, and identify the trust's beneficiaries, among other things.

Real property is transferred into trust when the settlor executes a deed conveying title to the trustee. In order to convey the property out of trust, as through sale, the trustee must execute a trustee's deed. Named after the executing party, the trustee's deed in South Carolina is generally a special warranty deed, which carries special warranty covenants that the grantor will warrant and defend the title against any lawful claims arising under, by, or through the grantor. This type of deed is particularly appropriate for trustees, who may have no knowledge of the standing of title prior to their trusteeship (and therefore cannot offer a broader warranty).

The trustee's deed names each acting trustee as the grantor and cites the name and date of trust. It should make a reference to the previous deed conveying the parcel into the trust (or the derivation of title), in addition to meeting all other requirements of form and content for instruments affecting interest in real property in the State of South Carolina.

The trustee's deed must be executed by all each trustee and acknowledged by two witnesses. Depending on the circumstances, the trustee may also execute a certification of trust and provide it alongside the instrument of transfer.

Consult a lawyer with questions about living trusts and trustee's deeds in South Carolina. South Carolina Trustee Deed Forms Have Been Updated as Recently as Tuesday May 15, 2018