Probate is the legal process by which an Ohio court supervises the distribution of the estate of a deceased person. Typically, the court will appoint the executor named in the will to gather information about assets and liabilities, pay outstanding debts from the estate and distribute assets to beneficiaries. Probate requires time, attention and paperwork. However, a living trust may allow assets to pass to beneficiaries without going through the probate process.
Some Ohio seniors may want to set up an educational trust to provide for their grandchildren. A trust does have some advantages over a 529 savings plan. For example, a 529 savings plan can affect a person's financial aid eligibility, and it limits the contribution of a couple to $28,000 per year per recipient if federal gift tax is to be avoided. An educational trust can be set up in such a way that it supports more than one generation of family members.
When a person in Ohio dies before planning their estate, the surviving family members usually have to go through probate court in order to settle the estate. The family member who is chosen to act as the estate's personal representative will have to apply for the position by filing a probate action.
In some Ohio families, an adult child may not be good at handling finances. This may leave the parents concerned about their child squandering the assets that they leave. It is possible to pass assets to an adult child in a manner that will prevent the mishandling of money.
When people think about estate plans, they have a tendency to get a little uncomfortable, which is not unusual. After all, it can be difficult to think about what you want to happen in the event of death, and creating an effective estate plan can be quite complicated. However, ignoring the subject won't make it just go away. In fact, you could be doing yourself a great disservice by avoiding estate planning.