Why It is Important for Foreigners to Issue a Last Will and Testament for Their Nicaragua Assets

Why It is Important for Foreigners to Issue a Last Will and Testament for Their Nicaragua Assets of the Law Firm Corrales & Associates Blog

Happiness is not doing what one wants, but wanting what one does.

Jean-Paul Sartre

If are a foreigner with assets in Nicaragua our law firm advices that you consider issuing a Nicaraguan Will for your Nicaraguan assets.

It is not that any Will that you may have issued in your country of origin or residence abroad is not legal in Nicaragua, or that it may not be executed here. It is a matter of saving your heirs a lot of time and resources by doing so.

As you may know, Wills were created to solve the issue of the distribution of your assets after you are no longer walking on this earth. It is intended to resolve issues among the people that may have rights to them. Issuing a Nicaraguan Will is easy, fast, and incredibly cheap compared to the cost of either executing a foreign-issued Will or probate judgment, or going through a probate process in Nicaragua.

First, the requirements for Wills in other countries may be different and there could be a question if it may be executable in Nicaragua among Nicaraguan judicial authorities, and the process could last around a year, and be submitted before the Supreme Court and a lower Court.

When it is time, a Probate resolution may require to go through an Exequatur process, which is a process before our Supreme Court in which they will review if the process complies with Nicaraguan requirements, that is, if the proper procedure was followed according to the Nicaraguan authorities and system. If the Supreme Court decides that it does not, the execution of the Probate resolution will be rejected, leaving your heirs with the need to start a process here in Nicaragua to be declared legal heirs.

If the Supreme Court deems that the examined documents do comply with Nicaraguan legal requirements, then the documents need to be taken to a lower Court to be executed in a new process, and only then they can proceed to affect the Registry if a real estate property is involved.

The above takes time and resources that your heirs may not have. It also implies that they would have to know a good reputable lawyer that will assist them well, which usually is not the case. Another reason for issuing a Nicaraguan Will is when a property is purchased in a couple’s name and they want the other person to receive a full title when the first person goes. Some people live in places in which that happens automatically, like the State of California for example, but it does not here, but having each of the couples issue a Nicaraguan Will is a way of eventually obtaining the same effect if one person passes away.

This is why we recommend when possible to issue a Nicaraguan Will now, which will only affect your existing assets in Nicaragua (make sure the Notary writes that in the document), and this will facilitate your heirs’ actions when going through the difficult time of having lost a loved one. Assets can be disposed of in the way that best suits the person granting them, and can be changed as many times as desired through the execution of a new will that revokes the previous one.

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