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Estate Planning Archives

What you need to know about the new estate and gift tax laws

As a reasonably well-to-do Ohio resident, you probably already have a will. Maybe you also created one or more trusts that benefit your children or grandchildren. In all likelihood, you created these documents and possibly others as part of your overall estate plan and with an eye toward saving taxes.

What happens when a will cannot be found?

If a close relative dies and you are left trying to figure out his or her estate, it is quite helpful if there is a will. However, if you cannot find the will, then it is not going to be of much help. Luckily, there are some steps you can take to try to find the will and figure out the wishes of your loved one.

Why do you need a will?

Creating a will is one of the most important things you can do to care for your family after you are gone. Death does not come at a pre-planned time, and you never know when the unthinkable will happen. To ensure the care of your family and the division of your assets as you wish, you should have a will long before you think you will need it.

Tips for a smooth trust administration

The estate planning process can be confusing, and it is important to ensure it goes as smoothly as possible. When property and assets are involved, sometimes even the closest families can be contentious. You can make sure the trust administration process goes well by planning ahead and making your wishes clear. Here are some tips about choosing a trustee, communicating your wishes and updating your estate plan.

How to choose an executor for your estate

If you are putting together your will, particularly if it's the first time, understanding everything you need to cover can be a challenge. One of the first steps, though, is to pick your executor. This decision is important because the executor of your estate is the person you are trusting to take care of all of your final debts and the disposition of your assets. That makes the position one of trust, and it also complicates the choice, because the people you are most likely to trust the most are also likely to be beneficiaries, which could potentially put them in the position of having a conflict of interest.

The first 5 things to know about living wills

People these days must really have faith in our court system. How else can one explain the number of adults who don't have a will? Indeed, recent statistics indicate that 64 percent of Americans still do not have a will. Without a will, the courts will determine who your heirs are, who controls your estate and name an executor to distribute your assets and a guardian to care for your minor children.

5 common mistakes people make when writing a will

It's a life task that most don't want to put on their to-do list, yet incredibly necessary. Creating a will ensures that your wishes are carried out after your death. Although no one likes to think about dying, a will prevents your assets from getting caught up in lengthy probate proceedings in court, complicating the process for your loved ones. 

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