For Native Americans in Arizona, a Will is a very important document to have. The American Indian Probate Reform Act of 2004 has given you much more freedom in determining what will happen to your property after you die. Since the act passed, you can even direct what will happen with your Indian Trust Land.
If you die without a Will, some of your trust lands could end up leaving your family without anyone having a choice in the matter.
AIPRA changed everything - have you updated your will?
Prior to 2004 and AIPRA (the American Indian Probate Reform Act), most Native Americans needed two Wills, one that dealt with Indian Trust Property and a second that dealt with non-trust property and personal property. This lead to extreme situations where both wills could be challenged in court and neither was found valid.
AIPRA fixed the problem and a properly executed will that contains instructions for your Trust or Restricted Lands in one section and another section dealing with your non-trust lands and personal property in another section is all that you need under both State and Office of Hearing and Appeals requirements. If your Will is older than 2004, its very important that you rewrite it to include the important changes. Indian Will attorney Brain Utsey can help you take care of this important change.
A Will can be a simple legal document
As an Indian Will attorney, Brian Utsey will take you though the easy steps of deciding what you need to include in your Will. If you have minor children, you’ll want to designate who will provide care for them after you’re gone. Beyond that you’ll get to direct what is done with your property – both land and other possessions.
A simple will is a good start
There’s more to Indian estate planning than just a simple Will, but a Will is a good start. By consulting with Brian Utsey, an Arizona estate planning attorney, you’ll learn if you should take further steps to protect your property and heirs. He’ll explain these further options, which might include a Living Will, granting Powers of Attorney for various reasons, and setting up various Trusts.
Your initial one-hour consultation with an Indian will attorney is free.
Arizona Indian Law Attorney Brian Utsey is experienced with the nuances of Indian Will preparation and can guide you in creating an effective Indian will that takes the AIPRA changes into account.