West Virginia Disclaimer of Interest
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Disclaimer of Interest for Real Estate Located in West Virginia
Under the West Virginia Statutes, the beneficiary of an interest in property may renounce the gift, either in part or in full (W. Va. Code 42-6-1 to 42-6-19 Uniform Disclaimer of Property Interests Act). Note that the option to disclaim is only available to beneficiaries who have not acted in any way to indicate acceptance or ownership of the interest ( 42-6-13).
The disclaimer must be in writing and include a description of the interest, a declaration of intent to disclaim all or a defined portion of the interest, and be signed by the disclaimant ( 42-6-5 (c)).
Deliver the disclaimer within nine months of the transfer (e.g., the death of the creator of the interest) to the personal representative of the decedent's estate or the trustee, or file it with the court having authority to appoint such a person or to enforce the trust ( 42-6-12). If real property is involved, record a copy of the disclaimer in the office of the clerk of county commission in the county where the property is located in order to avoid any ambiguity regarding the chain of title ( 42-6-15).
A disclaimer is irrevocable and binding for the disclaiming party and his or her creditors ( 42-6-5), so be sure to consult an attorney when in doubt about the drawbacks and benefits of disclaiming inherited property. If the disclaimed interest arises out of jointly-owned property, seek legal advice as well.
(West Virginia DOI Package includes form, guidelines, and completed example)