Probate Q&A What Are Nonintervention Powers? | Estate Planning TV 014
If you are here to learn about probate and nonintervention powers, then you’ve likely recently lost a loved one.
I want to first say I’m sorry for your loss.
Now, though, it’s time to get down to business so you can focus on remembering the life and times of your loved one and get through this process we know as “probate.”
If you’ve done any research or talked to a probate attorney they’ve probably mentioned nonintervention powers before.
I wanted to take a little bit of time to talk about what nonintervention powers are, why you want them, and how to get them.
What are Nonintervention Powers?
This is probably one of the few times where a legal term actually specifically describes the thing it is describing.
Nonintervention powers give the power of the Personal Representative (sometimes called the Executor) to act without intervention from the courts (i.e. nonintervention).
That means every time you as Personal Representative want to do something you don’t have to ask the court for permission, report it to the court, or otherwise interact with the court.
If it sounds like it’s a good thing that’s because it is.
Why You Want Nonintervention Powers
Aside from not having to get the court to sign off on everything, which in and of itself is a huge benefit, there are a couple of other things that make this really nice.
First, it makes the probate significantly cheaper.
If your probate attorney can manage things from the comfort of his or her office without having to go into court all the time (or even file stuff all the time for approval) a lot of time and effort is saved.
When time and effort are saved the estate wins because that means more money for the beneficiaries.
Second, it helps the beneficiaries get paid faster.
Whenever the court is involved, things tend to go slowly. That’s just the government at work.
With nonintervention powers you can complete the inventory, sell property, and otherwise do what you need to to do administer the estate without the court.
That means everything goes faster.
That means assets can be distributed faster.
How Do You Get Nonintervention Powers?
Getting nonintervention powers is usually a relatively easy process.
If you have a will and nonintervention powers are provided for in the will a court will usually grant them without any further questions.
If you do NOT have a will you can get nonintervention powers if you ask and a couple of other requirements are met.
1. The estate must be solvent (have enough assets to pay all of its bills, and:
(a) the Personal Representative is the decedent’s spouse AND there is only community property in the estate AND there aren’t any kids that are the decedent’s only; or
(b) the Personal Representative was not a creditor at the time of decedent’s death AND nonintervention would be in the best interests of the estate.
If you meet the requirements, the court grants you nonintervention powers. Simple as that.