What is the Cost of Nevada Probate?
Probate is a required court procedure for most estates in Nevada. The purpose of probate is to settle the affairs of the deceased and to transfer remaining property to their heirs and beneficiaries. The purpose of probate is to ensure that no fraud is committed after someone passes away.
It is best to start the process quickly after the estate holder’s passing. In general, the whole process will usually take between 4 to 6 months. This is if there are no complications. It can take a lot longer if there are problems like someone contesting a will or debtors coming forward to receive a piece of the estate.
The total cost of the probate process depends heavily on the size and type of your estate. Naturally, the more complicated and large the estate – the higher the cost.
A well-informed attorney can assist you with minimizing costs while still ensuring that you get the best representation possible.
Nevada Probate: The Basics
The first step in the probate process is to determine if there is a will and who will administer the estate. If there is a will, this person is usually named. A judge will appoint someone to administer the estate if there is no will or if the person in the will is unable to complete the duties.
Next, the will needs to be proven valid. A judge can determine this. It is unlikely to be complicated if you had an attorney prepare the will. However, there are still things that can be problematic such as someone contesting the terms of the will, questions over if this was the final will, and if the estate holder was of sound mind when they created the will.
The estate administrator then needs to notify creditors and calculate the total value of the estate. This can be the most timely part of the process because creditors need time to be notified. If the estate is large, it may also take a significant amount of time to determine its value.
After all of these steps are completed, the remaining value of the estate can be distributed to heirs and beneficiaries. This signals the end of the process and the estate is officially closed.
Fees and Costs
There is no one-size-fits-all cost calculation for the Nevada probate process. Each step may have additional fees. Complications will also make the process more expensive. In general, many of these fees are subtracted from the total worth of the final estate.
Common fees associated with the Nevada probate process include:
The executor is the person who is either named in the will or is appointed by the court to handle the estate and probate process. It is essentially a payment for their time while administering the estate. The fees are dictated by state law.
However, a different payment scheme can be dictated in a will. If this is the case, the court will follow the wishes of the will.
These fees are also determined by state law. They may even vary by jurisdiction. They can also relate to the size and complexity of the estate. It can range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.
In Nevada, attorneys can either charge by the hour or they can ask for a percentage of the total value of the estate. Both the client and attorney will agree on the costs beforehand and payments are usually done at the end of probate.
Appraisal and Other Valuation Fees
The administrator of the estate has to value the worth of the property. They may need additional help with large and complex estates. All real estate will need to be valued by a professional.
Other property like businesses, jewelry, artwork, vehicles, and other high-cost items may need to be valued individually by specialty appraisers. This can all add high costs to the probate process.
These are fees associated with things like stocks and bonds, bank accounts, estate tax returns, and other tax complications. An accountant usually goes over the estate information and calculates what needs to be done.
Other Possible Fees
There may be additional costs associated with the process. These are fees like storing or shipping property, upkeep of real estate, realtor fees to sell a property, or even postage costs to mail notifications to possible debtors.
Can you avoid Probate Costs?
No, you cannot avoid probate costs if the estate is required to go through the process. However, it is possible to minimize some costs. One main way to do this is to find knowledgeable attorneys who offer reasonable fees.
An informed lawyer can help your heirs and beneficiaries lower fees associated with accounting and property valuation. They can recommend trusted professionals and they can ensure that you do not miss any deadlines that could have additional fines or fees. Finally, they can help you draft a will to reduce costs to your heirs or they may even be able to help you avoid the probate process completely.
There are options to skip or minimize the probate process. These can be utilized either during the estate planning process or before probate, depending on the size of the estate. However, these options may incur their own costs.
Some typical ways to avoid or lessen the probate process in Nevada include:
- Trusts: this is created during estate planning. Any property or wealth put into a trust is not subject to the probate process.
- Other ways to avoid probate include naming beneficiaries on certain accounts and having joint property ownership.
- Affidavit of entitlement: the probate process is not necessary for any estate less than $20,000. In these cases, certain beneficiaries can file for full disbursement of the estate 40 days after the estate holder passes away.
- Set-aside: This can be utilized if the total of the estate is less than $100,000. A petition needs to be made to the court. Once it is granted, distributions of the estate can be made without further intervention from the court.
- Summary administration: This is for estates that total between $100,000 and $200,000. It is a more simplified procedure than the regular probate process.
Free Consultation with Probate Attorney
Not sure if you need a probate attorney? This guide should help you determine if you need to hire a probate attorney in Las Vegas!
If you have more questions about probate and would like a free consultation, please call our expert attorneys today!