Inheritance theft takes many forms. It's often not as simple as someone taking possession of a deceased loved one's wedding ring from the hospital or walking out of the house with a set of fine china because it was "promised" to them.
Individuals who set up trusts do so to protect their funds from being overtaxed, easily squandered and to protect a loved one's eligibility for government benefits such as Medicaid. It can be unnerving for you to find out that your trustee isn't carrying out their assigned duties or acting in a financially prudent way. Many signs may send a message to you that it's time to replace your trustee.
Your rich relative died and left everything to charity. You were hoping for a windfall. Can you contest the will?
Most people who are chosen to be executors of a loved one's estate aren't estate planning attorneys. However, they have legal obligations under Ohio probate laws. You don't want to run afoul of those laws.
An executor is someone who the testator (the person drafting a will) appoints to pay their final debts, preserve the value of their assets and to distribute those assets upon their death. Estate planning attorneys generally advise their clients to pick someone who is both trustworthy and responsible for this role. When the executor fails to do what they're supposed to, their beneficiaries may ask a judge to have them removed from their role.
Individuals draft health care directives to clearly spell the types of medications or life-saving care that they'd want to receive if they became unable to verbalize those same decisions for themselves.
In trying to plan around potential estate disputes, you realize that children probably are not going to fight over money. You plan to split it all up equally.
While being asked to be an executor of someone's estate is something that most will only be asked to do once or twice during their lifetime, it's a role that carries with it a tremendous responsibility. When you're appointed to the role, it's your responsibility to handle everything regarding an estate from locating and filing a decedent's will with the probate court to paying final expenses.
For many people, the first step in estate planning is simply writing a will. As important as this is, that will may not stand up in a court challenge if your heirs contest it. Below are four different reasons they may do so:
Some estate administrators face extraordinary challenges administering the estates they oversee. Battles among heirs can erupt and factions can form among the survivors. A relative who is left out of the estate proceeds can challenge the will and delay the probate process as the case wends its way through the court system.