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Estate Planning & Probate Litigation Archives

Young? Single? Child-free? You still need an estate plan

If you're young, single and child-free, you probably don't haven't had a lot of reasons to think about your estate plans just yet. However, there are aspects of an estate plan that shouldn't be neglected by anybody.

What happens if you die and you aren't married to your partner?

People in committed relationships sometimes don't feel the absolute need to get married -- and that's fine. Just make sure that you and your partner take the steps necessary to protect each other if either of you should die or become incapacitated.

How do you deal with the deceased's personal property?

Some estate plans go into careful detail about how every item in the estate is to be distributed -- but most do not. That can leave you, as the executor of the estate, with the job of figuring out who gets which of the deceased's personal possessions.

What talks do you need to have with the family about your estate?

A well-developed estate plan is the best way to preserve your assets, protect your future and shield your heirs from unnecessary taxes. Yet, it can be difficult for people to address some of the key conversations they need to have with their families as they go about their plans. Quite often, they aren't even sure where to start.

Blended families and inheritance in Ohio

Do you have a blended family? If this is your (or your spouse's) second marriage, your family unit may include your children from your first marriage, your spouse's children from a first marriage and the children you have together. More than likely, you love all of the kids equally -- even the ones that aren't biologically related to you. That's why it's so important to understand how Ohio's inheritance laws look at the situation.

Passing on a gun collection to an heir

For some people, guns are just utilitarian devices that they use for hunting or protection. For others, guns are collector's items, valuable pieces of family history or part of their cultural identity. If you have a prized gun collection -- or even just a few special pistols that have been in your family for a while -- it's only natural to want to pass those on to your heirs.

What are the first things an executor should do?

Being someone's executor is a huge responsibility -- and it can be rather overwhelming. Not only are you coping with your own feelings about your loved one's death, but you have to immediately start dealing with the estate.

Can you name anyone as an executor?

One of the most important aspects of estate planning is naming someone to be the executor of your will. In Ohio, an executor must be at least 18 years old and mentally competent. Unless you waive the requirement for your executor to obtain a bond from an insurance company, you must name someone who has a good credit history and no criminal record. Overall, one of the most important aspects of an executor is that he or she is someone you trust to follow the instructions in your will.

The need for a health proxy

When it comes to estate planning, many in Ohio do not want to think of the bad things, such as death or a challenging medical situation. However, these things do happen, and if one does not have a plan for how to deal with them, things can get messy. A health proxy is one thing that can help ease the stress of friends and loved ones in certain circumstances.

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