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Puerto Rico Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: As the current owner of land in Puerto Rico, am I permitted to lease the land to an individual or entity..See more info

As the current owner of land in Puerto Rico, am I permitted to lease the land to an individual or entity for the purpose of constructing a dwelling on the property?

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 30, 2023

So long as you are the current sole owner of the land, you can lease said real estate to an individual or entity. Nevertheless, a lease contract is temporary by nature. Allowing a third party to erect a permanent structure on your land, of which you're not the owner, exposes you to legal... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: Hi! Im 19 and i am wondering if i can get legally kicked out of my home by only 1 parent out of the two in puerto rico

I have a horrible relationship with my parents but all my problems and fights are with my mom, they are both still married and live together with me at my house, my mom once called the police to kick me out because we had a fight and the officer said theres nothing they could do because i was 18... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 27, 2023

Your boyfriend's mother is correct: until you reach the age of 21, Puerto Rico Rule of Law considers you underage, subject to your parents' authority. You provide little information regarding the family dynamics in your home. Has your father intervened regarding your eviction? If you feel... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: If I'm selling my portion of land to family, why is the lawyer asking for marital status?
Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 19, 2023

Regardless of whom your selling your participation to, the Puerto Rico Notary Law requires a notary to identify the personal circumstances of each person who appear before him/her to subscribe a deed or sworn statement. Each person must demostrate that he/she is of legal age, and provide the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: What legal action can I take if one of the heirs does not want to sign a real estate license to sell my mom’s house?

My mom is wanting to sell her house in Puerto Rico and the heirs are myself my sister and my niece (which has taken my late sisters position as heir). She is the only one that has not signed the contract, doesn’t respond to the realtor or the families emails, texts or phone calls. The house is... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 19, 2023

The Puerto Rico Civil Code states that no commoner is forced to remain in a property community. If your niece does not want to sell, you can take her to court in an estate liquidation lawsuit. Your mom and the other heirs would be the plaintiffs. Your niece would be the defendant. If she does not... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: My dad passed away in Puerto Rico in August 2022. My uncle called me and said that my dad had a open bank account.

My dad didn't have a will but my uncle said that he notified the bank that my dad had 2 kids and no wife and that he would like the money to be given to us both equally. I live in Florida.

Now I lost communication with my uncle and he didn't give me the name of the bank or account... Read more »

Terrence H Thorgaard
Terrence H Thorgaard
answered on Jan 18, 2023

It appears that you need to contact an attorney in Puerto Rico. Your question has nothing to do with Florida law.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Puerto Rico on
Q: How do I get guardianship of a minor in Puerto Rico, my sister wants me to keep her son for a year or more.

I live in the states

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 10, 2023

For a short term guardianship, a sworn testimony from your sister and your nephew's father would be sufficient, stating the date on which the minor would leave Puerto Rico, the date on which your nephew would return to his mom, the address where your nephew would physically reside in your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: Uncle signed a paper in the US, gifting his portion of inheritance from mother’s house in Puerto Rico to sister. Legal?

Grandmother died in 2013 without a will and she had seven children/heirs. The house remains in my grandmother’s name to this day, and my aunt moved in and took control of the house without the consensus of all the heirs.

My aunt made a document for my uncle to sign in the U.S. in... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 10, 2023

There are three ways in which an heir can transfer his/her hereditary rights to another: by ceding said rights to another, by donating the rights or by repudiating his/her inheritance. The first two must be done by subscribing a deed (escritura) before a notary, with both the donator and the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Puerto Rico on
Q: How long after my 18 year old daughter starts working, can I stop child support?

She will be finished with her technical college of cosmetology by mid April. Once she starts working, I need to know when and how I go about stopping child support. ASUME has been no help at all. Thank you!

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 7, 2023

The Rule of Law in Puerto Rico states that a person comes of age at 21 years old. Until then, your daughter has a right to child support.

Nevertheless, a person of 18 years or more, can be emancipated if she can support herself, has independent economic means and (1) both parents as well as...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: Grandmother died in 2016, no will, aunt moved into house and wants to pay below market value to pay off siblings.

After grandmother died without a will, aunt entered house, removed uncle’s belongings & changed the locks.

Two offers from aunt:

Option 1 pay each sibling $5,000 for their share. $5,000 each for 7 heirs is $35,000 total valuation for house.

Option 2 threatened to go... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 5, 2023

From the scenario that you paint, Option 2 (going through the Puerto Rico courts) seems the better alternative. It will force an appraisal of the real estate, to determine each heir's share in the estate. Any expenses incurred in maintaining the property or even increasing its value will be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate and Estate Planning for Puerto Rico on
Q: Aunt died and bequeathed money to siblings who died before her. Do their children inherit their parents portion?

We were told by executor that the siblings portion, since they have passed away, is cancelled. I

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 3, 2023

I'm assuming that your aunt left a Will upon her demise. The date of your aunt's death will determine the answer to your question. If your aunt died before November 28, 2020, her estate is subject to the Puerto Rico Civil Code of 1930. After November 28, 2020, her estate is subject to the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: How do I find out if my aunt left a will? She lived in Puerto Rico when she passed.

Didn't find any documents when I went to clean out her home.

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Dec 29, 2022

The process entails submitting a copy of your late aunt's death certificate, then, preparing and submitting a request for testmentary certification to the Office of Notary Inspections ("ODIN", by its Spanish acronym). ODIN will certify whether or not your aunt left a will and... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: I want to leave my home but I'm 18 can I leave and just leave hay note sing by me and saying why I'm leaving?

I want to leave but what happens if she takes my note and takes it to hay judge

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Dec 20, 2022

Although in other states, an 18-year old is considered an adult, for the purposes of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Rule of Law says that a person is an adult at 21 years of age. However, an 18-year old may be emancipated (that is, legally brought to adulthood) either by the subscription of a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: How can I relinquish my portion of ownership to one of my siblings who also owns the property in Puerto Rico.

A year ago my deceased parents' property in Puerto Rico was transferred in a Resolucion document to myself and my 5 siblings. I want to relinquish my ownership to one of my siblings or if not possible to have the remaining 5 siblings take equal portions of my ownership. I do not want to be an... Read more »

Ramon  Olivencia
Ramon Olivencia
answered on Dec 3, 2022

That "resolution" you mention must be examined to ensure precisely what it entails. In general, however, the process to relinquish or renounce an inheritance will depend on the year of the passing, given that there is a new recent Civil Code in effect. For instance, if the passing was... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Puerto Rico on
Q: How much longer do I have to pay child support in Puerto Rico if both boys are 20 and 18?

In Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, I have two boys who are 20 and 18 years old. Instead of using Assume, I have been paying child support through military allotment. My second oldest has been out of school for six months, and my eldest has been out for a year and a half. In Puerto Rico, their collegiate... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 28, 2022

In Puerto Rico, a minor reaches legal age when he or she reaches 21 years old. Nevertheless, Rule of Law states that a dependant child may be entitled to receive child support through 25, if said child is studying undergraduate or even graduate studies.

That being said, cessation of payment...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: When can a buyer not sue a seller for not following thru on contract?

I accidentally signed a eContract for selling my house in puerto rico and then notified both buyer and broker 30 minutes afterwards before either of them noticed contract was docusigned and notified them that the signing was a mistake.

And then later same day texted both of them that... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 23, 2022

Normal sales option contracts require that a buyer provide an option to take the proposed real estate off the market during the sales term. You may not have received money, but the realtor may have received an option deposit to be kept in an escrow account until the sales deed is signed by the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law, Contracts and Small Claims for Puerto Rico on
Q: How do I sue someone who never completed a job that was paid for in full?

I paid an individual to install gates and to pressure wash, apply cement topping and sealant, and to correct all drainage issues. I originally paid half upfront so that he could begin working. Later, he asked for half of the remaining balance because he was going through some issues (sick wife,... Read more »

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 21, 2022

Unfortunately, this seems the case of a "no good deed goes unpunished". The Law of Contractor Registry, Law no. 145 of August 10, 1995, as amended, requires that any contractor working on residential properties must file a request to be included in the Puerto Rico Consumer Affairs... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Lemon Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: I bought a brand new Toyota Corolla in January of this year and water leaks into it every time it rains. Is this a lemon

My car smells like mildew every time it rains and it’s not even a year old. Water is leaking in from the lights on the roof in the front passenger side.

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 21, 2022

I'm assuming that you purchased the vehicle as new from a Puerto Rico car dealer. Have you taken the car back to the dealer to have it serviced? Under the Puerto Rico Consumer Affairs Department ("DACO", by its Spanish acronym) regulations, you have 3 years or 36,000 miles as the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Car Accidents and Criminal Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: I was being chased in San Juan while waiting for a car repair. When they got out of the car I hid and use it to get out.

I'm being charged with stealing the car and hitting another as I tried to escape for fear of my life. All this occured right by mechanic. I asked for video recording but only shows me leaving. Nothing occuring in residence cul de sac where this all occured. Anything you can advise on would be... Read more »

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
answered on Nov 18, 2022

The 22nd is Tuesday, and we're at the start of a weekend. You may want to repost this and add "Puerto Rico" as a heading (you hadn't selected a geographic heading, and that could result in delays with someone seeing your question) See the text, "Show More States." Nov.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: The lawyer in Puerto Rico has stated that the Island Gov't. will take 20% of the funds for taxes. I am on S.S.Disability

I pay no taxes in the states. Will that make any difference on the 20% Tax?

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 18, 2022

At this time, Puerto Rico does not have an inheritance tax. Nevertheless, if an heir residing in the states sells his/her share in a real estate property located in Puerto Rico, the proceeds of the sale are subject to a 15%-20% retention pursuant to the Puerto Rico Tax Code, so as to force the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: My father's will/estate has been settled in Puerto Rico and we all know what we're recieving, but the lawyer said I

Have to travel to the island to get my funds. Is this correct?

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Nov 18, 2022

As a rule, banks prefer to personally deliver in hand checks to each of the heirs, unless an heir living abroad grants a special power of attorney authorizing someone else to physically appear to collect the funds. If you already have an attorney working the case and you cannot travel to Puerto... Read more »

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