Creating a will is an important step in planning the distribution of your estate (assets including real and personal property) following your death. Nevada wills allow for any children, your spouse, other family members, and pets to be provided for after your death. LegalZoom works with the testator (or the person making the will) in creating valid Nevada wills and in assigning a person (called the executor in most states) to administer a Nevada last will and testament after the death of the testator.
Basic Requirements of a Nevada Last Will and Testament:
Age: The testator must be at least 18 years old.
Capacity: The testator must be of sound mind (capable of reasoning and making decisions).
Signature: A Nevada last will and testament must be signed by the testator, or by an attending person at the testator's express direction.
Witnesses: There should be least two witnesses who sign their names to a Nevada last will and testament in the presence of the testator.
Writing: A Nevada last will and testament must be in writing to be valid.
Beneficiaries: A Nevada last will and testament may make a disposition of property to any person.
Other types of recognized wills:
Holographic Wills: A holographic will is a will in which the signature, date and material provisions are written by the hand of the testator.
Electronic Wills: Electronic wills are recognized in Nevada and must meet the specific requirements specified by Nevada law.
Distribution of Property:
A will is a legal document created by you to determine how your property is distributed after your death. In general, Nevada laws allow you to dispose of your property as you wish.
Other Purposes of Wills:
Our Nevada wills form may be used to designate a guardian for any minor children.
Our Nevada wills form may also be used to name a personal representative to handle a decedent's (the person who died) property and affairs from the time of death until an estate is settled.
Notable exceptions to the ability to distribute property:
Community property with a right of survivorship vests in accordance with the right of survivorship.
Life insurance benefits will go to the named beneficiary.
Support of the family: If a person dies leaving a surviving spouse or a minor child or minor children, the surviving spouse, minor child or minor children are entitled to remain in possession of the homestead and of all the wearing apparel and provisions in the possession of the family, and all the household furniture, and are also entitled to a reasonable provision for their support, as allowed by the court.
Providing for Pets
Under applicable Nevada state laws, a trust for the care of your pets is valid. After your death, the trust allows you to assign a caretaker for your pet(s) to ensure proper care of your pet. The testator may make a testamentary addition to a trust in the will, which would designate the trustee as the beneficiary to the pet(s). Legalzoom's Nevada wills form gives you the choice of providing for your pets in this manner.
Changing and Revoking
Changing a Nevada Will and Testament
A Nevada will and testament may be changed whenever the testator desires.
A Nevada will and testament can be changed through a codicil, which is an addition to a will that may modify or revoke one or more provisions of the will, or add one or more provisions to the will, and is signed with the same formalities as a witnessed will, electronic will or holographic will.
Revoking a Nevada Will and Testament
A written Nevada will and testament may only be revoked by:
Burning, tearing, canceling or obliterating the will, with the intention of revoking it, by the testator, or by some person in the presence and at the direction of the testator; or
Another will or codicil in writing, and executed according to Nevada laws.
Probate and Estate Taxes
After the testator has died, probate proceedings prove the validity of the Nevada last will and transfer property to beneficiaries. Within 30 days of death, the person in possession of the decedent's Nevada last will should deliver it to the district court. However, if the decedent's estate is worth less than $20,000 and no real estate is involved, then probate proceedings of the Nevada last will may be avoided. In cases where the decedent's property is less than $50,000 exclusive of liens, beneficiaries or heirs may petition the court to forgo probate proceedings for the distribution of assets.
After opening probate, the court appointed administrator or executor to the estate receives a legal document called letters of testamentary or articles of administration, which outlines her responsibility and authority to the estate.
The Nevada estate tax system is subsumed by the federal estate tax system. Hence, no further tax liability is required from the state. IRS Form 706 and extensions must be filed with the Nevada Department of Taxation if federal estate taxes are due.
It is extremely important to make a Nevada will if you want to control the distribution of your estate. If you die without a valid will, you are said to have died "intestate" and your property will be distributed according to strict Nevada state laws.
The following is a basic overview of Nevada intestacy law. The term "issue" is defined as the lawful children, grandchildren or more remote lineal descendants of the decedent.
If the decedent leaves a surviving spouse and a child or children, then the estate goes one-half to the surviving spouse and one-half to the child or shared by the children.
If the decedent leaves no issue, the estate goes one-half to the surviving spouse, one-fourth to the father of the decedent and one-fourth to the mother of the decedent, if both are living. If both parents are not living, one-half to either the father or the mother then living.
If the decedent leaves no issue, or father or mother, one-half of the separate property of the decedent goes to the surviving spouse and the other one-half goes in equal shares to the brothers and sisters of the decedent.
If the decedent leaves no issue, father, mother, brother or sister, or children of any issue, all of the separate property of the decedent goes to the surviving spouse.
Nevada laws are strict towards distribution of property without a will. The laws may not reflect your intentions for distributing your property after death. Hence, if you make a Nevada will you can bypass Nevada's intestacy laws and distribute your property according to your wishes.