Colo. Rev. Stat. § 15-11-403

Current through Chapter 290 of the 2022 Legislative Session (except for Chapter 210 which is not effective until 7/1/2022 and Chapters 227 and 229 which are not yet available)
Section 15-11-403 - Exempt property
(1)
(a) Prior to January 1, 2012, the decedent's surviving spouse is entitled to exempt property from the estate in the form of cash in the amount of or other property of the estate in the value of twenty-six thousand dollars in excess of any security interests therein. If there is no surviving spouse, the decedent's dependent children are entitled jointly to the same exempt property. Rights to exempt property have priority over all claims against the estate, except claims for the costs and expenses of administration, and reasonable funeral and burial, interment, or cremation expenses, which shall be paid in the priority and manner set forth in section 15-12-805. The right to exempt property shall abate as necessary to permit payment of the family allowance. These rights are in addition to any benefit or share passing to the surviving spouse or dependent children by the decedent's will, unless otherwise provided, by intestate succession, or by way of elective-share.
(b) On and after January 1, 2012, the decedent's surviving spouse is entitled to exempt property from the estate in the form of cash in the amount of or other property of the estate in the value of thirty thousand dollars in excess of any security interests therein. If there is no surviving spouse, the decedent's dependent children are entitled jointly to the same exempt property. Rights to exempt property have priority over all claims against the estate, except claims for the costs and expenses of administration and reasonable final disposition and funeral expenses, which are paid in the priority and manner set forth in section 15-12-805. The right to exempt property abates as necessary to permit payment of the family allowance. These rights are in addition to any benefit or share passing to the surviving spouse or dependent children by the decedent's will, unless otherwise provided, by intestate succession or by way of elective-share.
(2) The dollar amount stated in paragraph (a) or (b) of subsection (1) of this section shall be increased or decreased based on the cost of living adjustment as calculated and specified in section 15-10-112; except that, when the increase in the dollar amount stated in paragraph (b) of subsection (1) of this section, as enacted in Senate Bill 11-016, enacted in 2011, takes effect, the next regularly scheduled cost of living adjustment will be suspended for one year.

C.R.S. § 15-11-403

Amended by 2021 Ch. 123,§ 12, eff. 9/7/2021.
L. 94: Entire part R&RE, p. 995, § 3, effective July 1, 1995. L. 96: Entire section amended, p. 657, § 6, effective July 1. L. 2002: Entire section amended, p. 652, § 5, effective July 1. L. 2009: Entire section amended, (HB 09-1287), ch. 1682, p. 1682, § 10, effective July 1, 2010. L. 2011: Entire section amended, (SB 11-016), ch. 211, p. 211, § 1, effective August 10. L. 2021: (1)(b) amended, (SB 21-006), ch. 492, p. 492, § 12, effective September 7.

(1) This section is similar to former § 15-11-402 as it existed prior to 1995.

(2) Section 31(2) of chapter 123 (SB 21-006), Session Laws of Colorado 2021, provides that the act changing this section applies to final dispositions of human remains or human fetuses made on or after September 7, 2021.

COMMENT

As originally adopted in 1969, the dollar amount exempted was set at $3,500. To adjust for inflation, the amount was increased to $10,000 in 1990 and to $15,000 in 2008. The dollar amount in this section is subject to annual cost-of-living adjustments under Section 1-109.

Unlike the exempt amount described in Sections 2-402 and 2-404, the exempt amount described in this section is available in a case in which the decedent left no spouse but left only adult children. The provision in this section that establishes priorities is required because of possible difference between beneficiaries of the exemptions described in this section and those described in Sections 2-402 and 2-404.

Section 2-204 covers waiver of exempt property rights. This section indicates that a decedent's will may put a spouse to an election with reference to exemptions, but that no election is presumed to be required.

Historical Note. This Comment was revised in 2008.

For provisions relating to the time of taking effect or the provisions for transition of this code, see § 15-17-101.