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Questions Answered by Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
4 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My father passed away july 2020. after living with us for 15 yrs. We built onto our home for him to have his own area.

He paid 60,000 of the add on and we paid the rest. He was never on any mortgage, taxes or insurance. He lived here for free and now my brother thinks I should have to pay him 1/3 of what my dad paid to the build 15 yrs ago. There are 3 of us children. Also, I was on all his checking and savings and... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Jan 21, 2021

If your name is on everything, that's what will determine ownership. assets with beneficiary designations are not subject to probate.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: As a beneficiary I never receive any communication whatsoever from the Executrix of my fathers estate. What can I do?

The attorney for my Fathers estate claims that the executrix (my sister) does not need to communicate with me. The attorney said she only needs to communicate with him. I am being told nothing. What can I do about this?

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Dec 20, 2020

If you are a beneficiary, you have to be notified of the filing of an inventory and the final account, giving you an opportunity to object, and the Court would schedule a hearing on any and all objections. Other than that requirement, the fiduciary has no obligation to communicate directly with... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My fathers trust is sole beneficiary of his estate. So why would the attorney file my fathers estate in probate?
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Dec 17, 2020

Any assets that are not specifically mentioned as being in the trust, must go through probate to allow the transfer.

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4 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: Can you cash a check made out to estate without going through probate

The person has a small estate. And there was a small check from the nursing home made out to his estate for return of rent that he did not use because of death

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Dec 14, 2020

You will have toped an estate in order to cash the check. Consult a probate attorney for more information about simple estates.

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5 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: My mother wants to protect the equity in her home from her debts when she passes. We live with her and take care of her.

What's the best way to keep the house when she dies?

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Dec 9, 2020

She can execute a transfer on death designation affidavit to protect against credit card debt claims.

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4 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: How can I add on to my will. I want to clarify what is included with my house like my vehicles and tractor

I already gave my daughter her inheritance of 50 acres. My son gets the family house and 10 acres. My daughter is questioning whether he gets the contents of the house and vehicles and such. I want to add onto my will that my son gets all that.

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Nov 14, 2020

You can make minor changes to your will through the use of a codicil. Contact an attorney for assistance in adding a codicil to your will.

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2 Answers | Asked in Banking and Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: My mother and I had Joint bank accounts. And in the will it states for her estate to be devided 50/50

My sister was named executor over the will. I was wondering if the joint bank accounts my mother and I had Together would have to go through the probate or would be considered part of the will.

My mother always helped her sister out with finances and my sister is trying to take out that... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Sep 29, 2020

A joint account is not considered to be an estate asset. The balance in the account would be payable to the joint holder.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My father lived in Ohio when he died. I live in RI. I came to Ohio to handle his affairs and the property manager of his

building wont let me in his apartment. He was divorced, I'm his only child. I have paid for his cremation, even have a letter from the funeral home stating this. I am only in the state for a few days. How am I able to get access to his place so I can get any documents ,pictures and his... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Sep 2, 2020

I am sorry for your loss.

The apartment remains your father's, as long as the rent has been paid. Unfortunately, if the next month's rent was due on the first of the month, and you are unable (or unwilling) to pay for another month, the landlord can dispose of his items.

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My parents died 12 days apart. If they had a will does their will and their items have to go thru probate court, before

anything can be gone thru? My mom passed on August 3, 2020 and my dad passed on August 15, 2020

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Aug 20, 2020

It will depend upon how thee assets are titled.

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My grandmother died and I received notice of probate of will. I am checked as a legatee or devisee named in the will.

The case is now closed and I have never heard anything else should I do something?

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Jun 6, 2020

I suggest that you call the attorney for the estate. You might be able to access the estate file on the website of the Probate Court where the estate was filed. You should have received notice of virtually everything that was filed, including the final account and fiduciary's report.

2 Answers | Asked in Elder Law for Ohio on
Q: My 89 year old mother is in rehab after she was in Parma UH Geriatric Psyc Ward. Diagnosed with Dementia w/Psychosis.

What are my next steps I do not have financial POA. I have Medical POA

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Jun 3, 2020

Unfortunately, with a diagnosis of dementia, your Mother, in all likelihood, will not be deemed competent to sign a Financial Power of Attorney. The only other way to handle her finances will be through a Guardianship in Probate Court. The Medical POA will allow you to talk to her doctor. I would... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My mother in law going to recieve a substantial amount of money and a house through inheritance. Can she move into

the house now or does she have to wait. Mother-in-law sister died 3 weeks ago and left her the house

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on May 26, 2020

If the executor agrees, she should be able to move into the house, and pay the expenses, i.e., the utilities, etc.

As for the personal assets, these items should be removed and stored, until distribution.

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2 Answers | Asked in Elder Law for Ohio on
Q: My mother in law is financial and legal power of attorney of her aunt who has a substantial savings.

She is a joint account holder with her aunt. Her aunt has a will but has not named an executor. Upon her passing, will the money in her accounts go to probate or will it go to the joint account holder (mother in law)?

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on May 22, 2020

If it truly is a joint account (both names on statement), upon her death, the money in the account(s) will go to the joint account holder. Sometimes a name is added to an account for convenience (ability to sign checks, etc.), in which case the other name would not be on the statement.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Attorney is stuck out of country with no other attorney in office to handle my Mom's estate. She was decease 4/12

. We cannot get ahold of him only through secretary. He won't tell us anything about her will or what is going on. His secretary just tells us to give up house keys. There is no debt. Money was all POD. Only thing left is house and car. I'm feeling like there should have been someone else... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on May 18, 2020

Has the attorney been retained to handle the estate? Has anything been filed yet in the Probate Court? You have no obligation to follow the secretary's instructions.

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4 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Is it true that credit card debt doesn’t have to be paid if your loved one was the sole owner and doesn’t have assets?

My dad passed suddenly. He had life insurance and several pensions for my mother. He had no will. His car was surrendered and the remaining wiped. His student loans forgiven. I took care of all of this. He has simple credit card debt. The house is a survivorship deed and we have a small town... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Mar 31, 2020

I agree with your attorney - if the credit card was only in your Dad's name.

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1 Answer | Asked in Elder Law for Ohio on
Q: I own my home, I filed a paper of transfer the ownership to my husband upon my death.

I worked n a nursing home 26 years, no thank you. It looks like hospice for me, we have wills and living wills. He has Tricare for life and so do I. He is my sponsor, I have no children and my two sisters have their own issues and are well off. What else do I have to do to keep me at home. I have... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Mar 16, 2020

If your deed is a "joint with right of survival" deed with your husband, h the ownership will transfer to him upon your death. If you have to go into a nursing home, on Medicaid, your home would be a "protected asset" so long as your husband continued to live there. Whoever is... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Can an executor of the estate sell the house of the deceased without filing the will in Probate Court?

My Aunt wants to sell the house that my Mom lives in ASAP. She wants to evict her and sell my grandmother's house. I have inquired about this and still have more questions about it. I know from my inquiry, that the will hasn't been processed in Probate Court and the house is still in my... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Mar 12, 2020

It would depend upon who is the owner of the property. If your grandmother has no ownership interest in the property, then it would not have to pass through probate. Was you grandfather's estate probated, because your grandmother would have been able to assert her spousal interest at that time.

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1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Elder Law for Ohio on
Q: Does Medicaid have interest or look back in the people in your household.

My older brother early 50's receive Medicaid do to stroke, aneurysm etc. I turned in his renewal forms. I'm his unofficial caregiver so i get Medicaid also. What I'd like to know is would Medicaid look back through my back account too? I have a savings not much but a few k I... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Mar 3, 2020

Everyone who receives Medicaid will have their finances renewed annually. With the exception of spouses, each individual is reviewed individually, so your finances would not be considered in a review of your brother’s.

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: What can a family member do to get a Will probated when another family member insists there isn’t one?

The son has the Will but is insisting there isn’t one because he doesn’t want one of his sister’s to receive anything. This sister has a copy of the will and names the son the executor with all remaining assets from estate, once everything has been paid to be divided equally amongst the 3... Read more »

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Feb 28, 2020

I would suggest presenting the copy of the will to be admitted, with an explanation for why the copy is being presented. The individual with possession of the original would then have to present it for admission, or not object to the admission of the copy. On the other hand, a probate attorney... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My mother's name is the only one on the deed for a property that we need to sell. There was no will. How do we proceed?

My mother passed in January. We desperately need to sell our other property, but my mother's name is the only one on the deed. My father's name is on the land contract and they were married when my mother passed. I do not know if that works in our favor.

Mary Ellen Leslie Esq.
Mary Ellen Leslie Esq. answered on Feb 12, 2020

If your Mother's name is the only name on the deed, you will have to open an estate, then have the executor get permission from the Court to put it up for sale.

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