General Durable Powers of AttorneyNovember 20, 2019
Estate Planning HomeNovember 20, 2019
Estate Planning Goals and Objectives
You do not build a skyscraper without first laying a solid foundation. In a similar way, a good estate plan begins by identifying and clarifying your goals and objectives. The usefulness of documents and legal methods available to an Ohio estate planning lawyer is maximized when you and your lawyer understand what you hope to achieve with your estate plan. To learn more about your estate planning options, contact the seasoned Ohio estate planning attorneys at Walker Novack Legal Group, LLC today by calling (614) 423-8276.
What Goals Do You Hope to Achieve with Your Estate Plan?
There are a multitude of objectives you can realize with your estate plan. Some of these objectives can be accomplished using the same document or process. Through discussion and consultation, you and your attorney may identify some or all of the following as objectives:
Avoidance of “death taxes”: While Ohio no longer imposes a tax on the value of a decedent’s assets, the federal government still does. An estate with a net value of over $11.4 million will be subjected to the federal estate tax. Proper management of one’s valuable assets during life and after death can help reduce or eliminate any tax liability.
Avoidance of probate: Probate refers to the process whereby a person’s assets are divided up and dispersed, all under the supervision of the court. If you want your heirs and beneficiaries to have access to your property quickly, or if you want to maintain some measure of privacy over the extent of your estate, avoiding probate through transfer-on-death accounts, trusts, and other methods may be advisable.
Care of minor children: If you and your child(ren)’s other parent dies or becomes incapacitated, do you know who will take care of them? What if there are multiple family members who would like to care for them? Your estate plan can identify the person or persons with whom you would like your children to reside and who you would like to assume responsibility for them. Absent such a designation, a court can place your children with the individual(s) the court believes are most appropriate.
Providing for a subsequent spouse or surviving adult children: If you were previously married, a carefully crafted estate plan can help ensure any subsequent spouse, as well as stepchildren or children of a subsequent marriage, benefit from your assets should you pass. In Ohio, a spouse is entitled to an “elective share” of a decedent’s estate. This means that if a person dies and has a surviving spouse to whom he or she leaves a small portion of his or her assets, that spouse may elect to receive the share of the decedent’s estate he or she would have been entitled to receive under Ohio law. This will reduce the amount of assets that any remaining heirs would receive.
Schedule Your Free Estate Planning Consultation Today
At Walker Novack Legal Group, LLC, we are committed to helping you preserve what you have worked hard to build and ensuring it is transferred seamlessly to the people or institutions you want following your death. Learn more about how we can help you achieve your estate planning objectives by calling (614) 423-8276 to set up your free, no-cost consultation.