Nevada Probate Laws – Another Reason to Move to the Silver State

Probate describes the process that the courts use to determine how to distribute an estate between heirs after the owner of the estate passes away. In Nevada, rules may differ from other states, but they can even vary by jurisdiction or individual probate court. In simple cases, probate may only last a few weeks, but in complex cases, it can drag on a long time.

Which Assets Must Pass Through Probate?

Many people are surprised to learn that their estate must pass through probate even if there is a will. Typically, a valid will may shorten the process, but part of probate ensures that the will is valid. A will simply gives instructions about how the assets of the departed person should get divided.

In Nevada, the will may also name an executor to the estate. In some other states, this position may be called a personal representative or estate administrator. This individual is usually responsible for making sure the instructions in the will are carried out. Typically, the executor will get assistance from a probate attorney to make sure that the right papers get filed and everything is done according to the law.

It’s possible for other relatives or other people with a relationship to the deceased person to challenge a will. However, this is actually fairly rare. It’s more common to find heirs that dispute how certain assets should be used when multiple beneficiaries have to share in them.

Some examples of these kinds of assets might include a family home or business. Sometimes, these disputes can be solved by buying some heirs out. Proper estate planning that anticipates these sorts of problems can usually avoid these disputes.

What If There Is No Will?

In some cases, people die without a valid will. In Nevada, the distribution of assets usually will follow something called intestate rules. Intestate just means that the state determines who get the assets instead of the will. Usually, a surviving spouse comes first, but children of the deceased who were not children of the surviving spouse may also get a share.

After a spouse, the surviving adopted, or natural children of the deceased person will inherit. After this, shares pass to other blood relations, like grandchildren, siblings, and so on. If no legal heirs to the estate can be found, the state may eventually claim the assets.

Can Nevada Executors Sell Assets During Probate?

If the deceased person left a home or other property, the best way to deal with it might be to sell it as quickly as possible. The problem is that these large assets may cost a lot to maintain. For instance, a home may come with payments for a mortgage, insurance, taxes, and so on. The easiest way to avoid these bills and divide the property is usually to simply sell it and divide up cash.

Depending upon how the will is written, Nevada rules may allow the executor to sell the estate. Typically, they will always need to provide written notice to all of the beneficiaries with a share in the property. They may need to deliver this notice well before closing to give beneficiaries a chance to refuse it.

However, it’s best to consult with an attorney before trying to market a probated home. In some cases, the executor may need to obtain an order from the court that grants them permission to sell before probate is over. An estate lawyer will know which papers they might need to file in order to make sure everything is handled in a way that will not cause problems later.