Ask a Question

Get free answers to your Estate Planning legal questions from lawyers in your area.

Lawyers, increase your visibility by answering questions and getting points. Answer Questions
Puerto Rico Estate Planning Questions & Answers
2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Estate Planning for Puerto Rico on
Q: How can i dispute CRIM’s fines/fees on unpaid taxes for a property I inherited through death?

I paid the principle of over $40k. The dues are even more. I never received a tax bill until Jan 2024.

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on May 7, 2024

Unfortunately, any property taxes owed must be paid by the heirs of the deceased owner. Whether you receive a bill from CRIM or not depends on whether you notified change of ownership. Assuming there are more than one heir, these taxes are proportionally imputable between the heirs. Legal liens,... View More

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Estate Planning for Puerto Rico on
Q: How can i dispute CRIM’s fines/fees on unpaid taxes for a property I inherited through death?

I paid the principle of over $40k. The dues are even more. I never received a tax bill until Jan 2024.

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on May 8, 2024

I understand this is a difficult and frustrating situation. Here are some steps you can take to try to dispute the fines and fees on the unpaid property taxes:

1. Gather documentation: Collect all relevant paperwork, including the will/trust showing you inherited the property, death...
View More

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: want house in a trust. Have no title yet, but in process adverse possession. Can i put it in name of trust or mine first

i lived in my house since 1960, have evidence of history of gas and light in my name and a sworn declaration from the 1980’s and neighbors as witnesses. I’m currently in the process of an adverse possession to get a title.

1.) Do I have to wait and get a title in my name first and then... View More

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on May 6, 2024

I'm assuming that an adverse possession in process means that you already have an attorney. I recommend that you consult this very question with your attorney. Nevertheless, with the information you've provided, (1) you need to wait to obtain the real estate title in your name; and (2)... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law, Tax Law and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: How do probate laws in NY and PR affect each other? My late husband's properties will be in probate simultaneously.
James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Apr 18, 2024

Probate laws in New York (NY) and Puerto Rico (PR) are separate and distinct, as they are two different jurisdictions. However, if your late husband owned properties in both NY and PR, the probate process will need to be initiated in each jurisdiction simultaneously. Here's what you should... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning for Puerto Rico on
Q: My father in law a resident of Puerto Rico passed away recently. A couple of years prior to his passing he had his

daughter open a bank account under her name and he gave her funds to put in it. HIs wish was that when he passed she would distribute the funds per his wishes. Which she did. 2 weeks after his passing someone found a will and is now saying that the money in her account should be part of the will.... View More

Alan Harrison
Alan Harrison
answered on Mar 11, 2024

That sounds like an inter vivos gift! Even if it was a joint account with rights of survivorship, that money typically would avoid probate and his daughter would be free to distribute it however she wished (maybe even if she didn't comply with your father in law's directions).

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Real Estate Law and Tax Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: Can we renounce this property to CRIM so it doesn’t pass on to our children when we pass?

My sister & I are declared heirs & paying taxes to CRIM since our mom’s passing in 2016, but 1 of the properties (land only) is not registered in our name at Prop. of Registry. It’s registered to our grandfather for more than 100 yrs. It was an unresolved matter for mom to register it... View More

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Mar 2, 2024

In Puerto Rico, dealing with inheritance and property taxes involves navigating a complex legal landscape, especially when property titles and registrations involve unresolved issues from past generations. If you and your sister are considering not passing a specific piece of land to your children... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: Is credit card inherited under the Puerto Rico law? I know some debt is but I am interested to know about credit cards.

My greataunt passed a few months ago. We notified the creditors and tried to cancel all cards. She left a will but the money she had was used for funeral and medical expenses in the months she was sick. She did leave some land though. Can the heirs in the will inherit the credit card debt? I know... View More

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Feb 28, 2024

According to Puerto Rico law, credit card debt is generally not inherited by heirs named in a will.

Specifically, Article 584 of the Puerto Rico Civil Code states that heirs are only responsible for a deceased person's debts up to the value of the property they inherit.

So if...
View More

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Estate Planning, Family Law and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: How does PR verify or confirm if there are additional heirs entitled to inheritance? is the heir process a civil process

I was raised by my grandparents and potentially found out through ancestry.com that my grandma may have had children from a previous marriage. If she did, they were not born or raised in PR, but neither was I. Do I need to disclose potential/alleged children if I don't have legal confirmation... View More

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Feb 24, 2024

In Puerto Rico, the process of verifying heirs and confirming entitlement to inheritance typically involves a civil procedure overseen by the courts. If you suspect that there may be additional heirs entitled to inheritance, it's important to disclose any information or evidence you have, even... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: If my father has 3 children and leaves his will only to 1. Then states the other 2 don’t get anything. Can they fight?

There’s 3 children but father left the will only to 1. This was approved by a lawyer. Can the other 2 children still fight to claim some of the will?

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Feb 4, 2024

In this situation, it's important to understand that the validity of a will and the rights of the children may vary depending on the laws of the jurisdiction in question, which, in this case, is Puerto Rico. In general, a person has the right to create a will and leave their assets to whomever... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: Puerto Rico: Inheritance - My father died Summer 2014 and the case is being delayed by 1 heir. Risk to lose inheritance?

One heir has fired her lawyers and then was none responsive for 3 years. Now she is hiring a new lawyer. Can she be held accountable for everything that has to be done again? Ex. Appraisal of the house. Also, am I at risk of losing any part of the inheritance? Ex. Money in bank accounts.

James L. Arrasmith
PREMIUM
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Feb 1, 2024

In a Puerto Rico inheritance case where one heir has been unresponsive and caused delays, it can be challenging, but it does not necessarily mean you will lose your inheritance. The heir who has been unresponsive may face consequences for the delays, especially if it has caused additional expenses... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: Our parents are deceased and they left us a house. There was 8 of us but one of our brothers passed.

We are all on agreement to sell the house except my deceased bothers’s kids. They never lived in PR, they live in the states. Can we sell the house without their consent? We are definitely giving them my brother’s portion of the sale.

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jan 4, 2024

You cannot sell an hereditary estate when one or more heirs are against the sale. It has to be a unanimous consent; or else, you'll need to go before the Puerto Rico Courts. This would be the legitimate way to anull your nephews' and/or nieces' lack of consent. Living in the states,... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: My father passed. I soon found out he owed CREM. Am I responsible for paying it?
Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Dec 28, 2023

The Puerto Rico rule of law defines a deceased person's estate as made up of the deceased's assets and liabilities. As such, any and all debts owed by the deceased person and/or by his (her) estate must be assumed by his (her) heirs up to the amount inherited. Thus, the to answer your... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Banking and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: My Dad gave his sister authorization in his bank account. The day after my Dad passed my aunt took money from his acct.

All the arrangements had been prepaid by him and my sisters and I paid for the remaining items. After obtaining the Declaration of Heirs, we found out about the money withdrawn by my aunt when the money was not hers. I spoke to the bank and they said she was authorized on the account and had the... View More

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Dec 18, 2023

Except that your aunt had a legitimate reason for taking the money out of the account (for which she'd need to present receipts), your late dad's estate is owner of those moneys until the probate processes are completed. Either by your father having left a will or going through the Puerto... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: Do I need an attorney to file a Declaration of Heirs in Puerto Rico?
Ramon  Olivencia
Ramon Olivencia
answered on Dec 10, 2023

Due to the particularities and legal requirements needed for a Declaration of Heirs in Puerto Rico, an attorney is highly recommended. That way, you can rest assured that the petition is filed correctly before the courts. Any errors could negatively affect the rest of the documents that are... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Puerto Rico on
Q: My parents are married, own a home in Puerto Rico and were told they had to make two individual wills. Is this correct?

My parents were told they have to make two living wills separately even though they are married. We are three children in total, one of which is my mothers child from a previous marriage. Both my parent's name are in the house documentation.

Nina Whitehurst
PREMIUM
Nina Whitehurst pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
answered on Sep 5, 2023

A "living will" is an advance directive that expresses one's wishes with respect to end of life medical decisions. My guess is what you meant to write was "last will and testament" or simply "will". It is very uncommon for a married couple to make a joint will... View More

View More Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Puerto Rico on
Q: My father passed away last year (2022) in Puerto Rico. How do I find out if a Will was left and if I was named?
Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Aug 29, 2023

Assuming that your late father lived and died in Puerto Rico, and having a copy of your father's death certificate, a request can be made to the Office of Notary Inspections ("ODIN", by its Spanish acronym), with whom are filed all the wills subscribed in the Commonwealth of Puerto... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: Who is the owner of a Real Estate Property in Puerto Rico after death of one parent? Spouse or Inheritanance?

My father and mother were gifted (via Escritura), a piece of land with a house built on it by them in Isabela, PR by my Paternal Grandmother in 1983. The property was registered but as far as we know from bills from the CRIM and Property Registry they only show my father's name on the... View More

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jul 18, 2023

After November 28, 2020, Puerto Rico rule of law determines that the heirs of an estate are the deceased's spouse and children. Before that date, the estate belongs to the deceased's children with an inheritance lien in favor of your widowed mother (called in Spanish, "la cuota... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: When a 'Cambio de Dueños' is filed and there are more than one owners shouldn't the change reflect all parties involved?

The land in question was given to us with documentation; Escrituras, segregated and Registered at the Property Registry through a Notary (lawyer) one of my siblings recently filed for a 'Cambio de Dueño" I noticed on the Global Catastro that when they processed the change, they left the... View More

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

I'm assuming the change in ownership to which you refer is with the Puerto Rico Municipal Income Collections Center ("CRIM", by its Spanish acronym). When more than two owners are involved (i.e., when a community property is filed with CRIM), there are two forms that should be used.... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Foreclosure for Puerto Rico on
Q: Are heirs responsible for a parents debt in Puerto Rico?

My father who was a resident of Puerto Rico passed away. He had a house where the mortgage was more than the value of the house. The house is going into foreclosure and will likely not bring much money. Am I responsible for that debt or does the debt stop with the value of the estate?

Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jul 6, 2023

The Rule of Law in Puerto Rico for hereditary estates is that the heirs, having accepted their inheritance, subrogate themselves in the deceased place regarding the estate's assets and liabilities. If an estate is more debt than assets, the heirs may repudiate their inheritance. Be advised... View More

View More Answers

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Puerto Rico on
Q: How much should heredity proceedings cost in the absence of a valid will in Puerto Rico?
Rafael  Pagan-Colon
Rafael Pagan-Colon
answered on Jun 9, 2023

You do not provide enough information to answer your question. Several factors that affect the costs are: how many heirs are there? Are they all alive? If any have died, did he/she leave descendants? Are these descendants all alive? Are any heirs minors (underage)? Did the deceased leave bank... View More

View More Answers

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.