Will adding a joint tenant to the title of real property cause reassessment of property taxes?

California homeowners benefit from Proposition 13, which keeps property taxes relatively low by basing them on the purchase price of the property, rather than the current fair market value of the property. When the property is sold or transferred, reassessment of property taxes may occur causing an upward, and unwanted, adjustment. Fortunately, this does not apply when the transfer involves merely adding a joint tenant to the deed. However, be sure to consult with an attorney about the ramifications of such a transfer as reassessment may result when one or more of the joint tenants subsequently pass away.

James F. Roberts
Founder and owner of the Law Office of James F. Roberts and Associates, a premiere estate planning law firm