Free New Mexico Last Will and Testament



What is a Last Will and Testament?

A New Mexico Last Will and Testament is an essential instrument that establishes how your belongings will be dealt with once you perish. The one who dies is formally referred to as the decedent. The testator can also appoint a guardian for their kids in the document to be sure there's somebody who can look after the children till they grow to be adults or until they get to a particular age.

In a New Mexico Testament, the decedent typically also names a personal representative-or co-personal agents (several individuals acting together in this capacity) to manage the estate. A personal representative is someone who gathers the information in relation to the decedent’s financial obligations and belongings, pays any overdue debts using the assets on behalf of the estate, and ensures that the decedent’s property is used as described in the Will, so this is a job with quite a bit of responsibility. The personal agent selected is usually somebody the testator truly trusts to conclude their final wishes.

If one dies without having a valid New Mexico Will (which in the majority of states implies it must be correctly witnessed, not only signed), someone will usually be assigned by the probate court to become the personal agent and settle the decedent’s financial obligations, utilizing assets as required to do so. After that, the residual assets will be distributed among the decedent’s beneficiaries in accordance with the laws of the state the decedent lived in.

In several states, if one spouse dies leaving their husband or wife, that surviving spouse will inherit all of the decedent’s assets without a Will saying the opposite. Sometimes, the testator might have specified a certain beneficiary to receive a life insurance policy, retirement account, or some other asset, and that inheritor designation will ascertain who gets those assets without a Will document.

The thing to be aware of is the fact that any person who wants to define the way in which their property will be handled after their passing should certainly create and correctly sign a Will to guarantee their wishes are recognized and fulfilled. Without a last will, you could be leaving it up to chance, the laws of the state, or a court of law regarding how your very last affairs will be settled.

Legal Requirements for Last Wills in New Mexico

In New Mexico, when people die, and there is some property remaining after their death, there are two possible case scenarios: either these people leave a testament where they write down their will relating to the remaining property (personal or real property), or they do not leave any will (such people are called intestate). In this case, it is up to the state laws to divide all the remaining property between inheritors relying on their vision. Very often, state laws divide the testator's property not in the way the testator would do, so if people care about who inherits the property after their death, they need to leave a testament (even though it is not necessary the New Mexico laws).

Usually, if there are no other inheritors, a surviving spouse receives all the assets. But if there are other inheritors (like children, for example), a surviving spouse gets only a fourth part of the separate assets but all the community property. Descendants receive all the rest of what's left. If there are no descendants or a spouse, then other relatives (such as grandparents and siblings) inherit a testator's assets. If testators divorce, there is a chance their spouses will not get anything stated in the will if there was no statement proving the opposite.

When testators do not want to transfer their property to any of their relatives, there are several options they can consider. They can choose one of the following options:

  • Make a "pet trust" (so other people will care for a testator's pet after their death);

  • Make a trust for anyone;

  • Make a charitable gift;

  • Set a legal guardian for minor children.

Also, it is essential to note testators cannot include some type of property in their will. Such property includes the following items:

  • Retirement account proceeds;

  • Life insurance policy;

  • Community property;

  • Right of spouse's share (if that spouse is not included in the will);

  • Property gained in joint ownership with the right of inheritance.

The other important thing testators need to consider is the necessity of proving the will in probate court. When testators prove their will in probate court, they become the participants of the court-supervised process, which is aimed at the division and transferring of a testator's property (both personal and real).

To prove their will to the probate court, testators have to submit both estate papers and applications for probate to court. This is necessary to open an estate. If a testator's estate cost is lower than a certain amount (established by the New Mexico laws), testators need to fill an affidavit only. This makes the probate process as simplified as possible.

If testators want to change their will, they can do it any time by codicil (an amendment, in other words). The process of making amendments must be performed the same way as the will was stated.

If the situation occurs when testators want to revoke their will, they can do it, as well. For this, they need to perform either a revocatory act on the will (for example, by "canceling, tearing, or burning" the paper) or a subsequent will. Testators can do it on their own, or other people can do it under their guidance (on condition of them being in the conscious presence).

Essential items to add in the will:

  • Beneficial owners: they can be any people testators choose.

  • Capability: testators have to be of a healthy mind.

  • Age: testators must be older than 18 years old.

  • Witnesses: at least two people, and they can sign the papers only after a testator does.

  • Signature: either a testator can do this, or someone under their guidance (and a testator must be in their conscious presence).

  • Writing: the will must be completed in writing form.

Last Will Forms for Neighboring States