2021 Nevada Legislature Amends Laws Pertaining to the Administration of Trusts and Estates

The Nevada Senate and Assembly both voted unanimously to pass A.B. 318 during the 2021 Session of the Nevada Legislature. A.B. 318 effects numerous provisions pertaining to trusts and estates. The Legislative Committee of the Probate and Trust Section of the State Bar of Nevada compiled the text of A.B. 318, and the State Bar Probate and Trust Section sponsored the Bill.

A.B. 318 primarily amends Titles 12 and 13 of the Nevada Revised Statutes and is intended to: (1) Clarify laws relating to trust and estates; (2) Adopt new laws to remain current as one of the top three leading jurisdictions for trust and estates in the United States; (3) Streamline the probate and trust administration process while including safeguards to prevent abuse; and (4) Provide additional laws in response to the Covid-19 pandemic with respect to electronic wills and trusts, and remote execution of such documents.

The full text of A.B. 318 may be accessed via the 81st (2021) Session of the Nevada Legislature’s public portal located at https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/NELIS/REL/81st2021. Selected highlights of the bill include:

  • Various amendments to NRS Chapters 132 and 133 to facilitate the execution of electronic wills, Trusts, and remote execution of both pursuant to the Covid-19 global pandemic.
  • Adoption of a new section of NRS Chapter 143 to provide penalties for refusal to accept certified letters of administration or letters testamentary. The newly created penalties are substantially similar to those currently in place for refusal to recognize powers of attorney (including liability for attorney’s fees and costs incurred in an action or proceeding that confirms the validity of the power of attorney).
  • Amendment to NRS 143.010 to clarify that a non-conflicted personal representative may act alone in situations in which one personal representative has a conflict of interest.
  • Amendment to NRS 146.070 to permit a probate court discretion to enter an order setting aside the estate in “pour-over” estates where the beneficiary is an intervivios trust established by the decedent. Any portions of the estate set aside to the trust are subject to the estate’s creditors unless it is demonstrated to the court that the creditors were provided notice pursuant to NRS 164.025.
  • Amendment of the definition of an independent attorney under a certificate of independent review as defined by NRS 155.094 to clarify that the drafting attorney may qualify as an “independent attorney” so long as he or she is not a transferee or served as the attorney for a transferee of a presumably void transfer under NRS 155.097(2).
  • Amendment of NRS 163.002 to clarify that a declaration by the owner of property that he or she or another person holds all the property of the declarant in trust is sufficient to create a trust over all the property of the declarant that is reliably identified as belonging to the declarant at the time of his death.

If you are in need of estate planning services, or would like to discuss the effect of any amendment of Nevada law on an existing estate plan, contact the estate planning attorneys at Lemons, Grundy & Eisenberg to schedule a consultation.