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Man in Nevada leaves millions but no estate planning

Many people in Nevada know that one of the most popular reasons for people to create an estate plan is to ensure that their assets go to the people they want them to when they die. An individual can make his or her intent clear by using estate planning tools such as wills and trusts. In fact, many find that the available tools can be customized to fit every financial situation or beneficiary.

However, if a person dies without estate planning documents in place, their assets will be subject to distribution as per the laws of the state of Nevada. This is true despite the size of the estate or the wishes of the deceased individual. This was the case for one recent estate here in our state.

According to a report, a man was discovered deceased recently in Carson City. It appeared to officials that the man was alone and had been dead for a while at the time of his discovery. As authorities began to clear out the home and property of the deceased man, they found several million dollars' worth of gold coins in a garage on the man's property.

Because the man in this case left no estate planning documents, the assets must be distributed to his next of kin under the law. In this case, that person appears to be a first cousin who resides in another state. However, had the man engaged in creating an estate plan, his wishes may have been better served. This could have been achieved through a review of the estate planning laws of our state and the creation of appropriate documents prior to his death.

Source: khou.com, "Modest-living recluse dies; millions of dollars worth of gold found in home," Feb. 26, 2013

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