Understanding the Probate Process in Nevada
After a person passes away in Nevada, his or her estate may go through a process called probate. Probate refers to the court’s supervision of the distribution of the deceased person’s assets to the person’s heirs, beneficiaries and creditors. If the decedent left a will, the distribution of assets will occur according to the will’s provisions. If the deceased did not leave a will, then NRS 134, the state’s intestacy laws, will control the asset distribution.
Nevada Probate Administration
There are four different types of probate administration in the state of Nevada. The four depend on the size of the estate that requires distribution. For estates that are worth less than $20,000 there may be the need to just fill out a document called an Affidavit of Entitlement. NRS 146.080 For those estates that are valued at less than $100,000, the property may avoid probate and may instead go through a simpler and more affordable proves known as a set aside. NRS 146.070 For estates worth more than $100,000 but less than $300,000, Nevada allows an abbreviated summary probate process. NRS 145 Estates worth $300,000 or more will be required to go through a full probate administration process.
Probate Procedure and Steps
After a person dies, his or her loved ones should first locate any will or other estate planning documents. The next step will be to open a probate case with the court. A probate lawyer in Las Vegas can open the matter, but he or she will information from the loved ones, including the death certificate for the deceased. Also, if there is a will, that should be presented to the attorney so the attorney can file the will within 30 days. If there is no will, a probate administrator will need to be appointed. The executor or administrator will then inventory the assets and work to pay creditors and distribute the remainder to heirs.
With respect to attorneys’ fees, those fees may either be assessed at an hourly rate or as a percentage of the estate. The percentage amount is outlined by a statutory schedule as contained in the Nevada Revised Statutes. NRS 150.060 In either case, the fee would be negotiated by the probate lawyer and the estate’s executor or administrator. At our firm, we like to suggest that we assess our fees at an hourly rate rather than take a percentage of the estate. We do this because we want you to feel as though we earned the money that we are paid. In many if not most cases, we can take the majority of our fees at the end of the probate as a charge to the estate.
The probate process can be lengthy and complicated one, but it is intended to protect the estate from misuse and theft. That said, if you are concerned about avoiding the probate process and its negatives for your own estate, you may consider a living trust. Not only can we help you with the probate of your loved one’s possessions, we can help you prepare an estate plan that both protects your assets and avoids the probate process. Please contact us today for assistance with your probate or estate planning matter. We offer free consultations.