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North Dakota Transfer on Death Deed

A North Dakota transfer on death deed allows an owner of real property to set up an automatic transfer of their property upon their death to the designated beneficiary. It is highly recommended as it allows the beneficiary to skip the probate process, which can be drawn out and costly.
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  • Notary: Required.[1]
  • Witnesses: Not required
  • Recording: Before the owner’s death in the county where the property is located.[2]

Legal Description

Overhead view of suburban tract.

A legal description of real property provides exact details of the property’s boundaries, location, and physical qualities using specific measurements. It can be found on the property deed or obtained through the county recorder’s office.


“The Southeast Quarter (SE 1/4) of Section Thirty-Three (33), Township One Hundred Fifty-One North (T151N), Range Eighty-One West (R81W), of the 4th P.M., Stark County, North Dakota.”


Infographic with 3 ways to revoke a transfer on death deed.

In North Dakota, a transfer on death deed can be revoked using one of three methods:[3]

  1. A transfer on death deed that revokes the deed or part of the deed expressly or by inconsistency;
  2. An instrument of revocation that expressly revokes the deed or part of the deed; or
  3. An inter vivos deed that expressly revokes the transfer on death deed or part of the deed

For the revocation to be effective, it must be recorded with the county recorder’s office prior to the transferor’s death.

How to Record

County recorder sign on door.

A transfer on death deed must be recorded before the transferor’s death with the office of the county recorder where the property is located. Recording fees vary by county.

Once a transfer on death deed is recorded, it becomes binding without notice or delivery to or acceptance by the designated beneficiary during the transferor’s life.[4]