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I just moved to New Hampshire…
…do I need new estate planning documents?
Welcome to New Hampshire! Chances are you will not have to have new documents created due to the doctrine of “reciprocity”. In essence, New Hampshire has laws that recognize the validity of estate planning documents executed in other states.
1) Durable Power of Attorney. RSA 506: 6, IX states, in relevant part, that “[a] durable power of attorney validly executed under the laws of another state … shall be deemed valid under New Hampshire law …”
2) Advanced Health Care Directive. RSA 137 – J: 17 states that “[a]n advance directive, living will, or similar document executed in another state, and valid according to the laws of the state where it was executed, shall be as effective in this state as it would have been if executed according to the laws of this state.”
3) Will. RSA 551: 5, I states that “[a] will made out of this state, and valid according to the laws of the state or country where it was executed, may be proved and allowed in this state, and shall thereupon be as effective as it would have been if executed according to the laws of this state.”
4) Trust. RSA 564 – B: 4-403(1) through (3) states that “[a] trust not created by will is validly created if its creation complies with the law of the jurisdiction in which the trust instrument was executed, or the law of the jurisdiction in which, at the time of creation the settlor [the person(s) who established the trust] was domiciled, had a place of abode or was a national; a trustee was domiciled or had a place of business; or any trust property was located.”
Keep in mind that while these “foreign” documents are considered valid in New Hampshire, their terms shall be governed and interpreted going forward according to the laws of New Hampshire, rather than the laws of the state or country where they originated.