Important Things to Know about Probate Law in Nevada
Probate Law is the legal process that follows a person’s death involving the validation and administration (execution) of their will. It also includes legal activities when a person dies without a Last Will and Testament.
The subject of probate law – and all the potentially relevant scenarios in which estate planning or asset protection is involved – can be a large topic area. This blog spotlights the most important things to know about Probate Law as it applies in Nevada, in the city of Reno. It is always advisable to seek the legal opinion of a probate attorney or estate planning attorney based in Reno if you wish to inquire about making a claim and/or filing a lawsuit.
Probate Law and Estate Administration
It is a widely cited fact that in Reno (NV), probate attorneys enjoy the state’s reputation as a strong protector of a person’s wealth and assets even after death. Probate is a necessary legal process that follows a person’s death and is required by the state’s statutory law.
Nevada’s courts have exclusive jurisdiction over estate proceedings. This means a legal challenge filed outside the state or via the federal judicial system does not have grounds to interfere, compel, or overturn a Nevada court’s judgment. This protects Nevada citizens’ assets and guarantees their family’s right to inherit if the will and estate planning are lawful and valid by the state’s laws.
Here is a useful resource for the reader: an informational brochure in PDF format titled “Probate and Administration of Estates.”
Assets Converted into a Trust
If you decide that your assets should be incorporated as a Trust, it automatically goes to the beneficiary or beneficiaries named in the will. If a creditor wishes to file a claim for compensation for a debt left unpaid by the deceased, they have two years to challenge the inheritance of a trust or seek compensation from the trustees.
Importantly, if you had chosen this and stated it in your will, your family and named beneficiaries’ inheritances are safeguarded. The estate can avoid probate: “This may include life insurance policies and retirement accounts … If the asset is owned jointly by two or more people, it will go to the surviving owners with no need to include it in probate.”
There may be complex situations where a creditor or debt collector has a valid ground on which to challenge this. Probate and Estate Planning attorneys in Reno should know these circumstances well and can advise you if you are in one of those situations.
A valid Will in Nevada
A will must be filed within 30 days after the person’s death. This is done at the court. There are eleven district courts serving seventeen counties. Any person over the age of eighteen can use a will to dissolve and distribute their wealth and assets. The laws in Nevada apply to a person who lived in Nevada at the time of their death or if they once lived in Nevada and left behind assets in Nevada.
Probate Without a Will
There are instances where a person dies without a will or where the will is declared invalid. This is called Intestate or Intestate Succession. The deceased’s estate, assets, and wealth are then distributed according to a court’s judgment after hearing from interested parties if necessary. The court will appoint an Administrator, who has the same function as an Executor of an estate (usually named by the deceased in their will).
A Few Key Notes on Probate Law in Nevada
Probate proceedings can take a long time to come to a close. Generally speaking, probating an estate without a will is typically more costly than proceedings where a legitimate will governs the estate.
What if the original will is lost or destroyed?
If a will is accidentally lost or destroyed by a person included or excluded by the will, the court may permit a copy of the will to be submitted. A person wishing to do this is called a petitioner and must prove the will existed at the time of the deceased’s death and was not revoked or replaced by the deceased with a later-dated, signed document.
All things considered, it is best practice to write down your wishes and have a Reno estate planning lawyer, business planning attorney, or trust lawyer operating in Reno draft your Last Will and Testament for you.
Interested to know more? Are you in a situation that calls for an attorney’s legal opinion?
Click here: Find a Reno Probate Lawyer Near Me.