Nevada Intestacy Laws

Discover the intricacies of Nevada intestacy laws with Wood Law Group. Our guide covers everything you need to know about estate distribution when there’s no will in NV. Call us for more information.

Understanding Inheritance Laws in Nevada

Estate planning, often synonymous with creating a will, is an essential aspect of any responsible individual’s financial strategy. But what about those who die without a valid will? How are their estates handled, and who can hope to inherit?

If someone dies without a will, it is called dying intestate. That is where Nevada’s intestacy laws come into play, governing the distribution of assets during probate.

While the state attempts to create a fair process, determining who gets what is not as simple as having a set of one-size-fits-all rules. That is why proactive estate planning is invaluable, providing clarity, reducing stress, and ensuring your assets find their way to the right hands efficiently.

In this guide, we’ll delve deep into what intestate succession means for you, your family, and your estate. However, you may want to consider reaching out to a skilled estate planning attorney such as those at Wood Law Group. With the right support, you will be able to understand the next step you should take.

What Is Nevada Intestacy Law?

The Nevada Inheritance law comes into effect when a person dies without a will. The term “intestate” refers to the individual who has passed without leaving specific instructions about the distribution of their estate.

Understanding Intestacy: When There’s No Will

When someone dies, their chosen will executor or anyone with the will has to file the will with the probate court. During probate, the decedent’s will is used to distribute assets according to their wishes and close the estate.

In Nevada, inheritance laws are crafted to distribute assets in a manner that the state deems appropriate and fair, adhering to a specific formulaic process outlined in the law (NRS Chapter 134).

Legal Implications of Dying Without a Will in Nevada

Nevada inheritance law holds the critical principle that if a deceased had no explicit wishes recorded, their assets go to those who would naturally inherit in common circumstances in the following order:

The Spouse’s Share

Nevada is a community property state. That means each spouse owns one-half of the property acquired during the marriage, also called the community property. But, property obtained before the marriage (separate property) is treated differently.

The surviving spouse is granted the entire estate if there are no children. The spouse may also receive the entire estate if the children are not legally recognized by the spouse who died.

If there are surviving legally recognized children, the situation becomes slightly more nuanced. If there is also a spouse, then the spouse inherits all of the deceased community property and 1/2 of the deceased separate property. The spouse will get the same share if there are no children but there are surviving parents of the deceased or if only the spouse and siblings are the heirs.

If there are two or more children, the spouse inherits all of the community property and 1/3 of the separate property.

The Children’s Share

In the event that a decedent is survived by children but no spouse, then in most cases, the children will inherit equal shares of the estate.

If a spouse and one child survived the deceased, the child inherits 1/2 of the separate property. If there is more than one child, they inherit 2/3 of the separate property, divided into equal shares.

The Parents’ Share

If an individual dies without a spouse or children but with parents, then the estate would be passed to the parents or one of them if the other has passed. If the decedent had living parents and a spouse, the decedent’s parents would inherit 1/2 of the separate property.

Probate in Nevada

Probate processes in Nevada can be time-consuming, costly, and often emotionally draining for those involved. With every asset accounted for and debts paid, the remaining estate is distributed.

Thresholds for Estates that are Probated

In Nevada, the probate process is handled depending on the value of the decedent’s assets. Under Nevada probate laws, if the total amount of the deceased person’s assets exceeds $20,000 or if real estate is involved, probate is required. This threshold increases to $100,000 if the person claiming the property is a surviving spouse.

Ways to Avoid Probate in Nevada

There are strategies to sidestep the probate process if a person dies intestate. That may be achieved by filing a petition with the court not before 30 days of the decedent’s death, provided that the estate is valued at or less than $75,000. If that doesn’t happen, assets are distributed according to Nevada law’s intestacy.

Moreover, a legal document called an Affidavit of Entitlement allows small estates to obtain and distribute the defendant’s assets without having to go to probate court.

Nevada Non-Probate Assets

Not all assets are subject to probate. That also means that not all assets are affected by Nevada inheritance laws. These assets include:

  • Life insurance policies

  • Retirement accounts

  • Bank accounts with a payable-on-death designation

  • Property held as a joint tenant with the right of survivorship

  • Living trust property

Understanding and utilizing these tools can simplify the inheritance process for your beneficiaries.

Tax Implications on Nevada Inheritances

In Nevada, there is no inheritance tax nor an estate tax at the state level. While estate taxes are taken out of the deceased’s estate immediately after their passing, inheritance taxes are imposed upon the deceased’s heirs upon receiving their inheritance. If you are a Nevada resident, you will not owe estate or inheritance taxes to the state, regardless of the estate’s size.

However, on the federal level, certain taxes will be imposed. For example, an estate will be subject to federal estate tax if it is worth more than $13.61 million in 2024.

It’s important to remember that the laws around estate and inheritance taxes change, and it’s essential to consult a tax or legal professional for current information.

Have More Questions About Nevada Intestate Succession Laws? Contact Us Today!

In the complexity of life and death, the transfer of assets or property can be a daunting maze without a mapped-out plan.

Nevada’s inheritance laws are often complex and can yield results that diverge significantly from the desires of the deceased. They are a reminder that without a will, the future of your legacy is, in significant part, out of your hands.

Taking steps today to perform even the most fundamental estate planning is an investment in your family’s well-being and your own peace of mind. Whether it’s drafting a will, creating a trust, or reviewing beneficiaries, these small actions can save your family from a burdensome legal process in the future.

Wood Law Group can help you take the steps necessary to protect your assets and make sure they are distributed according to your wishes. Contact us today for a free consultation to start working on an estate plan that meets your needs.