The loss of a loved one is a sad and confusing time. While grieving, families must resolve critical issues regarding funeral expenses, the debts, and bills of the person, and distributing their property. When a person passes away with a will, the person’s (decedent’s) estate will go through the probate process, where the contents of the will dictate exactly how property is to be distributed.
When a person passes away without a will, the process is different. Known as dying “intestate”, the law dictates who gets the decedent’s separate property—essentially creating a default will for the decedent. Nevada’s rule of intestate succession distributes property in the following order of priority:
- If there are a surviving spouse and a child, then half goes to the spouse and half to the child.
- If there are a surviving spouse and more than one child, then 1/3 goes to the spouse and the remaining children split the remaining shares of the estate.
- If there are a surviving spouse and no children, then one half goes to the spouse and half to the decedent’s parents; and if there are no surviving parents then the half goes to siblings.
- If there is no surviving spouse or children, then the decedent’s parents receive the estate.
- If there is no surviving spouse, children, or parents, then it goes to siblings and their children; and if none of these people exist, then it goes to the next of kin.
Resolving the Estate Through Administration
Instead of probate, an intestate estate goes through a similar process called “administration”. First, a qualified person must petition and obtain an appointment as administrator of the estate. This person is responsible for obtaining, appraising, and maintaining property, notifying creditors and resolving creditor claims, and distributing the property as required under the aforementioned rule of succession.
Contact Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. for Probate Help
If a loved one has passed away without a will, you should speak with a probate attorney. Resolving an intestate estate can be a challenging process, especially when there is wealth or complex property involved. A probate attorney can help you understand how to proceed with confidence and clarity. The attorneys at Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. are smart, experienced, and proven. Let us help you. Call Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. today at (775) 227-2280 to consult with an attorney or contact our office through our website.