DEFINITION of Assignee

An assignee is a person, company or entity who receives the transfer of property, title or rights from a contract. The assignee receives the transfer from the assignor. For example, an assignee may receive the title to a piece of real estate from an assignor.


An assignee may be the recipient of an assignment, a liability or appointed to act in the stead of another person or entity. For example, an executor of an estate may be appointed through a will left by a decedent. Power of attorney may be assigned to a person to tend to certain affairs for a person while they are out of the country or not capable of taking action for themselves.

Different Ways an Assignee Is Granted Rights

An assignee is the recipient of a title when a deed is signed to confer ownership of property in a transaction. A tenant might choose to transfer their property rights to an assignee who would assume duties for paying rent and tending to the property.

There may be limits to the rights and liabilities that are granted to an assignee based on the nature of the transfer or assignment of rights. For example, an assignee might take on the property rights from a tenant who vacated a rental property, but the tenant may still be liable if the assignee does not make rent payments on time. An assignee who takes title and ownership of real estate might not have certain rights to use the property any way they wish. There may be rights of ingress and egress that must be negotiated with adjacent property owners who hold surrounding land parcels. The assignee could receive certain rights that run with the land when they are granted the title.

The assignment of power of attorney can grant broad rights or be limited in scope by the terms set by the assignor. The rights could be for the specific handling of a contract or business deal that the assignor cannot be present for. The assignee typically will only hold the rights of power of attorney for a specified time or particular circumstances. Once the time has expired or the circumstances have been resolved, the assignee would automatically relinquish those rights. It is possible that the terms of power of attorney might allow an assignee to act in his or her own self-interest rather than for the interests of the assignor.

Not all assignment contracts are required to be made in writing, but they often are and might need to be notarized and witnessed in order to be valid. The assignment of wages, property and collateral for loans must be in writing.