Los Angeles, CA asked in Estate Planning, Tax Law and Probate for California

Q: Can a property in a trust that became irrevocable upon my grandma's death be reassessed for property taxes in San Diego

My grandma moved the property into a living trust in the mid 90's. She passed away in 2019 and the trust became irrevocable. The trust gives a life estate to my uncle. His daughter (my cousin) and I are executors of the trust. As the grandchildren we get the remainder of the property to do what we wish once my uncle passes away. As a part of his life estate he is entitled to live free and clear in a studio on the property while my cousin and are responsible for maintenance, taxes, etc. The county assessors are now saying that there may have been a change in ownership and the property may be reassessed for tax purposes. I want to apply for the grandparent/grandchild exclusion but I'm not sure if I really can. The CA state board of equalization has some confusing wording about it in a document about section 63.1 grandparent/grandchild questions/answers question 15 about life estate. Since the property never changed ownership because it's still in the trust can a reassessment happen?

1 Lawyer Answer
Julie King
Julie King
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • Monterey, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Depending on the language in the trust, you should qualify for the Grandparent\Grandchild exemption. You can take a copy of the trust to the County Assessor's office and explain the situation to them. If that doesn't work, contact a lawyer in your area for assistance. Best wishes!

1 user found this answer helpful

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