A Delaware (DE) quitclaim deed allows you to transfer real property from one person or entity to another. It moves whatever interest you have in real estate to another person, even if that interest is not perfect.
A warranty deed also transfers property from one person to another. However, a warranty deed transfers your interest in a different way. When you transfer using a warranty deed, you warrant that you have a good, marketable title. You also promise that you will help the new owner if someone shows up who claims to have any interest in the property.
A quitclaim deed does not include that same promise—you only transfer whatever rights you have. A quitclaim deed is sometimes mistakenly referred to as a “quit claim deed,” “quit claims deed,” or a “quick claim deed.” A quitclaim deed is very seller-friendly, but not as helpful for a buyer. In many cases, however, a quitclaim deed is the only option a seller has to transfer the property because there may be questions or problems with the title.
Important Laws & Requirements
- Laws: Section 121
- Additional Documents: Every deed should also be filed with a Realty Transfer Tax Return and Affidavit of Gain and Value.
- Recording: Delaware has just three districts to record quitclaim deeds—New Castle County, Kent County, and Sussex County.
- Fees: Fees vary by county.
- Your fees in Kent County start at $36.00 as a document fee, then $10.00 per page and $5.00 for each tax parcel.
- Fees in New Castle County are $13.00 per page and $3.00 for each parcel description. There is also a $30.00 document fee and another $5.00 technology fee for each document as well.
- Deeds in Sussex County are $9.00 per page, plus a maintenance fee of $1.00 per document.
- Format: Recording standards will also vary by county. For example, the standards required in Kent County include using:
- Paper size 8.5 x 11 inches for each document
- A 2.5” top margin for the first page and at least three-fourths inch (0.75”) margin for all other pages
- A right margin of at least three-fourths inch (0.75”)
- 15 pitch size for larger (15 characters and spaces per inch)
- Tax parcel numbers (the full 25-character code) on the upper third of the first page of all documents
- A notation as to who prepared the material in the top third portion of the first page
- Signatures from the people involved and a notary public
- Standards in other counties will be similar, but they may not be exactly the same. If you do not conform to the rules correctly, the recorder may still file the document for you for an additional fee.
How to Write & File a Quitclaim Deed in Delaware
You must create and file your quitclaim deed in one of just three counties in Delaware. You might also be able to utilize e-filing to record your deed in some circumstances. Otherwise, you should mail in the deed and supporting documents to the county in which the property sits.
Step 1: Prepare your quitclaim deed using an official form or a form that you can download online.
Step 2: Be sure that your document includes the following information:
- A description of the seller (name, residence, address, and taxpayer identification number and/or principal place of business), including whether the seller is an individual, corporation, or another entity type
- A notation about how much is being paid for the property
- A signature from a notary public
- An accurate legal description of the property
You may need to follow specific instructions for your area. For example, if you are transferring property in the City of Dover, you will need to go to the City of Dover Assessors Office to get your deed stamped before it can be recorded in Kent County.
Step 3: Once you have everything completed, file the quitclaim deed with the county in which the property sits. Be sure that you also pay the fees associated with filing the deed in the correct county. If you need help with specific requirements, the recorder representatives in the county in which the property sits can be a great resource.