Older generations are expected to leave approximately $70 trillion to their families and others between 2018 and 2042. If handled incorrectly, there may be strings attached to these transfers, which can lead to stress, delay and costs for family members and other recipients.
Selecting an executor
Selecting an executor carefully is the first estate planning step that can ease settlement. Older adults should assure that their executor is competent and prepared to assure these duties. They should have a candid discussion with potential executors and explore their willingness, ability and availability to serve as an executor.
It is important to gather and organize all important documents on assets and liabilities. These should be kept in a secure location or in a digital vault for the executor to reference and act upon, when needed.
The records need to include a list of all digital accounts, owed debts, and valuable property and heirlooms. Executors must know the location of this list and have access to it.
Attaching an estate distribution plan to the will provides a simple roadmap to relatives and beneficiaries about the terms of the will. The plan should not be complex.
This plan also helps assure that the will may be authenticated later. The will and this plan should be kept in a secure location known to the executer and trusted family members.
Ohio law governs probate. This is the process for authenticating the will, allowing the distribution of the estate’s, payment of debts and estate resolution.
Probate must take place in the court with authority over the decedent’s last residence. There may also be probate fees. Placing an estate in trust may avoid probate.
Speaking with a parent or relative about their estate and death may be difficult for everyone involved. But a candid discussion and planning can help assure that their wishes are carried out and ease matters for the family members they leave behind. This conversation, nonetheless, should be handled with understanding and consideration.
Attorneys can assist families with reviewing options that meet their estate planning needs. They can also help prepare the documents that comply with Ohio’s legal requirements.