Transferring property in Pennsylvania can be done in different ways. The quitclaim deed is the least complicated way to transfer property.
Other deed forms require the grantor (the property owner) to make legally enforceable promises about having good title to the property. A quitclaim deed does not.
Because of the simplicity of the Pennsylvania quitclaim deed form, it is often used when transferring property between family members.
Pennsylvania Quitclaim Deed Laws and Requirements
Under Pennsylvania law, a quitclaim deed must contain specific language and be signed by the grantor. To record the deed, the grantor’s signature must be acknowledged.
Before recording the deed, you will need to pay a recording fee and a transfer tax.
Pennsylvania law on deeds is found in Title 21, Chapter 1 of the Pennsylvania Statutes. The quitclaim deed is defined in 21 P.S. § 7.
The deed should include the property’s legal description, such as a metes and bounds description or a lot number and subdivision.
Depending on where the property is located, the property may have been assigned a uniform parcel identifier per 21 P.S. § 10.1 which should be included in the legal description.
According to 21 P.S. § 10, the grantor must sign a Pennsylvania quitclaim deed. There is no state law requiring the grantee to sign the deed.
The grantor’s signature must be acknowledged before a notary public or certain court officials for the deed to be recorded.
To ensure that a deed qualifies as a quitclaim deed, 21 P.S. § 7 provides that the deed must contain the words “release and quit claim.”
Failing to include these specific words may result in a court finding that the deed is invalid or a different type of deed.
In Pennsylvania, there is a required tax on the transfer of real property called the realty transfer tax. The amount of the tax is 1% of the property’s value.
The county Recorders of Deeds often charge an additional local realty transfer tax. Both the grantor and grantee are responsible for paying the tax made to the county Recorders of Deeds in the county where the property is located.
If the tax is not paid, the state can seek penalties from the grantor, the grantee, or both.
All Pennsylvania quitclaim deed filings must include the Realty Transfer Tax Statement of Value (Form REV-183) per Pennsylvania Code § 91.112. The Statement of Value must state the “true, full, and complete value” of the property.
Not all transfers are subject to the realty transfer tax. There are exemptions under 61 Pennsylvania Code 91.193, such as transfers between certain family members.
A Certificate of Residence form must be filed with the deed. For residents of Philadelphia County, the Real Estate Transfer Tax Certification (Form 82-127) is also required.
Pennsylvania does not require any witnesses for a quitclaim deed.
To record a quitclaim deed, the deed must be filed with the Recorder of Deeds in the county where the property is located. Each county may have different recording requirements and recording fees.
For example, Philadelphia County has specific requirements for recording a quitclaim deed.
How to Write & File a Quitclaim Deed in Pennsylvania
Follow the steps below to write and file a quitclaim deed in Pennsylvania.
Step 1 – Obtain Quitclaim Deed Form
Download the Pennsylvania quitclaim deed.
Step 2 – Add Preparer Details
On the top left of the page, add the name and address of the document’s preparer.
Step 3 – Fill in ‘Return To’ Information
Next, record the name and mailing address of the person receiving the deed after the filing is recorded.
Step 4 – Write Grantor’s Name and Address
Record the grantor’s full name and list the grantor’s address with the county included. The order is county, city, and state.
Step 5 – Enter Grantee’s Name and Address
Repeat this step with the information for the grantee.
Step 6 – Note Consideration
Enter the amount paid, if any, for the property after “in consideration of the sum of.” Write this in words, then write it numerically in the parenthesis that follows.
Step 7 – Write Property County
List the county where the property is located and provide the municipality or ward if applicable.
Step 8 – Enter Property Legal Description
Add the legal description of the property. This may require a separate page and attachment. Then, include the County Tax Parcel Number or Parcel Identification Number in the provided blank.
Step 9 – Get Quitclaim Deed Notarized
Have the grantor sign the deed in the presence of a notary. The notary will notarize the form to make the signing official.
Step 10 – Fill Out Realty Transfer Statement and Residency Certification Form
Fill out the Realty Transfer Tax Statement of Value (Form REV-183) and a Residency Certification Form.
Step 12 – Get Your Pennsylvania Quitclaim Deed Notarized
Take the signed, notarized deed and the necessary attachments to the Recorder of Deeds in the county where the property is located. Pay the transfer tax and any fees and file the document.
Pennsylvania Quitclaim Deed Sample
Below is an example of what a Pennsylvania Quitclaim Deed looks like.