Timely Topics

Category: Estate Planning

The Top 10 Estate Planning Mistakes

By Richard A. Myers
December 27, 2018 Category: Estate Planning

Not getting around to it. Not putting your plan in writing is always a bad idea. Believing the myth that estate planning is only for the wealthy: This is a fallacy. Estate planning is important for everyone who is concerned about where their assets will end up during disability and upon their demise. Often, when taking the value of a home into account, people are surprised to find that their estates are larger than they thought. Leaving the Living Trust Unfunded: A living trust is merely a vehicle that allows you to pass your assets outside of probate. However, if there are no assets in the trust, nothing has been accomplished. There is no point in drafting a living trust if the assets are not re-titled into the name of the trust. Leaving Assets as Joint-Tenancy: Titling assets as joint-tenancy with-right-of-survivorship (JT/WROS) does avoid probate because the assets pass automatically upon the first death, however, they are exposed to the lifetime creditors of the co-owner. Leaving

The Fundamental Questions to Ask Before Estate Planning

By Richard A Myers
December 27, 2018 Category: Estate Planning

Because estate planning is not just about reducing taxes but more about making sure your assets are utilized for my care and the care of my loved ones during an illness or disability and then distributed as you wish after you are gone, you need to consider four questions before you begin estate planning. WHO DO I TRUST TO CARRY OUT MY ESTATE PLAN? This is the first critical question to answer because you will not be available to oversee the plan. Carefully selecting your fiduciary and the alternate fiduciaries is the first step to the success of your personalized estate plan. The fiduciary will continue to carry out your estate plan during your illness, short or long term and then your wishes after you are gone. WHO SHOULD INHERIT MY ASSETS? If you are married, before you can decide who should inherit your assets, you must consider marital rights. Ohio has specific laws designed to protect surviving spouses. If you die without a will or a living trust, state law may dictate how much

The Basic Testamentary Estate Planning Documents

By Richard A. Myers
December 27, 2018 Category: Estate Planning

Once a decision has been made to engage in a formal estate plan, as opposed to letting the courts sort out who receives your property at your death, the decision essentially boils down to the following choices: Will-based Estate Plans: A Will-based estate plan uses a Will to contain all of the instructions that the client wants to apply to their property at their death. In effect, a Will is dormant until death occurs, then its terms spring into being and a court supervised procedure, called probate, begins and ensures that the decedents last wishes are carried out. The terms of a Will progress though naming guardians for minor children, payment of last expenses, distribution of any specific bequests, the disposition of the decedents property, including changing the title of the property from the decedent to the beneficiaries and the power and responsibilities of the personal representative. Trust-based Estate Plans: A trust based estate plan uses a revocable living trust to contain all

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