Houston, TX asked in Estate Planning for Texas

Q: My husband and I will make our wills in Texas. We are retiring in Puerto Rico. Will out will be valid there?

We have no kids. He is my beneficiary and I am his. He has his mother, I do not. I do have siblings and he has a sibling and a niece. Will parent, sibling or niece be due an inheritance from his or my will, even though we are each other’s beneficiaries?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Paul Premack
Paul Premack
  • Estate Planning Lawyer
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: It is always best to make your estate plan in the jurisdiction where you are living. If you are moving away from Texas to Puerto Rico for retirement, then wait until you have moved, see a lawyer in Puerto Rico, and make your estate plan under PR law.

That said, a valid Texas Will requires at minimum your instructions, your signature, and two witnesses. Puerto Rico is similar, so a Will made in Texas should be valid in PR. However, each jurisdiction has its own unique legal standards for court supervision, bonding of the Executor, proof of the Will's validity, etc. If you are retiring in PR and are planning to live there the rest of your life (and to die there someday) you will want a Will made under PR law, not TX law.

You will have to ask an attorney in PR if their law includes any required devises. Generally, you should be able to leave all assets to each other at the first death, without anyone else having any entitlement. But at the second death, some jurisdictions will enforce certain devises. Again, ask counsel in PR what is the local law there.

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