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A non travel related question.

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rqf
New York City
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A non travel related question.

Does one of the local Puerto Rico contributors know of any legal forums dealing with Puerto Rico law. I did a Google search and found the following forum but it is not very active. The site was

www.palidan.com/forums/messages/8/304.html…

Any help would be appreciated.

Puerto Rico
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1. Re: A non travel related question.

Could you be a little bit more specific?

rqf
New York City
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2. Re: A non travel related question.

My wife's sister died without leaving a will. The sister was not married and had no children. We want to determine who in the family is eligible to share in the proceeds of the estate under Puerto Rican law.

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3. Re: A non travel related question.

Your best bet would be to contact an attorney in PR. They can easily answer this question over the phone. I do believe however that if there are no children then the next in line would be parents. If there are no surviving parents, then I am not sure, but either way it will be a lengthy process.

san juan,Puerto Rico
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4. Re: A non travel related question.

if you can read spanish, you can search legal cases and laws in Puerto Rico at www.lexjuris.com

rqf
New York City
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5. Re: A non travel related question.

Thanks for prompt replies. We certainly will contact a local attorney as soon as all documentation with regard to the estate has been gathered.

My wife is fluent in speaking, writing and reading Spanish so I will check the website mentioned,

Thanks again

PR
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6. Re: A non travel related question.

If there are no children(or descendents) then it's the parents, if there are no parents then the brothers and sisters in equal parts. That's the basics. Obviously it's more complicated than that depending if anyone in line has died. You can try reaching Lexjuris.com or Colegio de Abogados.

Cabo Rojo, Puerto...
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7. Re: A non travel related question.

Hello,

As a recently graduated law student about to take the bar exam, I can answer this question (by no means am I to be considered binding legal advice, and false legal representation is VERY BAD in a legal sort of way), but Wills and Estates are my favorite legal subject (it's like a family tradition for me).

1. The first question to answer is: Did she leave a will? There are 3 types of wills in PR: open, closed and hand-written. Your best bet to verify this is by applying for a "negative will certification" from the Wills and Powers Registry of Puerto Rico. The form to file is:

tribunalpr.org/sistema/supremo/acrobat/Certi…

The address:

Postal:

PO Box 190860

San Juan, Puerto Rico 00919-0860

Physical:

Centro Judicial de San Juan - Piso 3

Ave. Muñoz Rivera, Hato Rey,

Puerto Rico

Telephone: Registro de Poderes y Testamentos

787-751-7877

If an open or closed will was registered (they HAVE to be registered within 24hrs of drafting by a notary public in order to be valid), then the Registry will have it. If a hand written will was drafted, then it has to be found, or at least searched for in a decent way (rummage around personal papers or files). If NO will is found, then we head on to:

"Sucesion Intestada", or "Unwilled succession", where our Civil Code takes care of the deceased's property and obligations. The sucesoral order is as follows:

1. Descendants ad infinitum (children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.)

2. Ascendants (Parents, Grandparents, etc.)

3. Preferred Collaterals (Siblings and nieces, no more, stops there)

4. Spouse (none, here according to you)

5. Ordinary Collaterals (everyone else left, sort of...)

6. The STATE (read Estado Libre Asociado)

Each step in the sucesoral order excludes the next, so if ONE ascendant is living, no one else gets anything. In your case, since your wife's sister had no Descendants or Ascendants (I suppose, 'cause if grandma is alive, she gets everything), then the estate is transferred to the surviving siblings and nieces.

The process, not a really long one (fast in legal terms, but slow in real time), needs to be handled by a lawyer, and it includes filing for a "Declaration of Heirs" or "Declaratoria de Herederos" in Spanish, where a judge emits a Resolution stating who the surviving heirs to the "Sucesion Intestada" are. Usual documents for this process are a Death Certificate, and all the supplemental documents needed to establish who the heirs are. Afterwards, everyone is free to partition the estate as the heirs see fit. If an agreement cannot be reached, then a court order is needed, but that's a REALLY long and winding road.

Feel free to email me any further questions (they serve as excellent practice!!).

Good luck!!

rqf
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8. Re: A non travel related question.

BIJOL - I understand you are not offering binding legal advice.

Th facts:

1. The deceased left no will. There is no husband and her only child is deceased

2. The deceased has five living siblings and there are two deceased siblings. Four of the living siblings are female and one is a male.

3. The deceased female sibling was married. The husband is deceased and there are two children, one male, one female.

4. The deceased male sibling was married. The wife is still living. There is one female child.

5. Issue of living siblings:

Female sibling #1 - Husband deceased. Two male children, one female child

Female sibling #2 - Husband deceased. One female child, one male child

Female sibling #3 - Husband is living. No children

Female sibling #4 - Husband is living. One female child, one male child

Male sibling #1 - Wife is living. Two female children. one male child from a previous marriage.

Thank you for taking the time to present such a clear representation of the issue at hand. Itindicates to me you will be a successful lawyer whatever your field of specialization.

My email address is rqf@verizon.net