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Estate Planning 

Durable Power of Attorney, Living Will,

Health Care POA.

General review of all assets to be sure meets estate planning goals

Estate planning is the process of thinking about, planning, and making arrangements for your life  in case of incapacity and death. This involves the preparation of legal documents and review of  your other financial matters. For example, everyone should have a Will  and perhaps a  Trust , but if there is no review of other assets to see if they are held only in your name or  Joint and Survivor  or Payable on Death, your plan may not work.  

Ensuring that your wishes are met upon your decease is only one part of estate planning. The  other part is to plan for the possibility of illness or advanced age which may result in an inability  to manage your personal and/or financial life. For this you need to consider a Durable General  Power of Attorney, Living Will  and Health Care Power of Attorney

Remember that not everyone’s plan is the same. Friends and family may tell you what you  should do (or not do), but it is best to explore that in detail, and in private, with an attorney who  represents only you.


Probate/Administration of Estates  

Probate is the legal process of administering a person’s estate after his or her decease. If  someone has a Will, the court will oversee the transfer of assets and payment of bills with the  Executor following the wishes of the Testator/Decedent. 


A Trust will avoid probate court, but only if it is properly funded, that is, the assets are either in  the trust or pass to the Trust upon your decease. 

You may also avoid probate court by naming beneficiaries on all accounts or holding everything  joint and survivor, but this plan has challenges. Did you do a TOD for the car? What  about the bank accounts? Did you change accounts from the last time you did your estate  planning? 

And if you do no planning – no Will or Trust – you do have a plan. It is what the State of Ohio  has decided for you. It may not be your plan, but if there is anything in your name upon your  decease, someone (perhaps a local attorney) will be appointed to transfer those assets to certain  family members that may or may not have been your intended recipients.

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