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Questions Answered by C. Lawrence Huddleston III
2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My mom passed no will. Her house was in a reverse mortgage She has little money in frozen bank acct. What do i do?
C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on May 14, 2021

If the reverse mortgage balance is lower than the amount you will net by selling it, you can sell it, pay off the mortgage company and keep the balance. You will need to open a probate estate to get both the house and the bank account. It will cost you little or nothing to consult with an expert... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Landlord - Tenant for Ohio on
Q: If someone inherits a home and all heirs agree do we have to wait til probate to evict tenants so we can move in?

He has a copy of the will leaving the home to him. Can we use that to start the eviction process on the tenants? They are nice ppl and have lived there a few years. We gave them 3 mths but at the end of the 3 mths we dont want to have to wait another couple mths to evict if they dont move. We are... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on May 10, 2021

If they do not have a lease, the Executor can evict them ... or demand that they pay a market rent. In fact, the Executor has an obligation to protect the value of the assets, and arguably to maximize the value of those assets. If this estate has real property and multiple heirs and the Executor... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: Ma father passat in his will he states house cars and all assets go to me and brothers equly before we got here the exc

He came on home and took GUNS knifes and other items said he had a verbal agrement with my dad but the will doesnt say that can he do that

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Apr 18, 2021

Verbal agreements made during lifetime mean absolutely nothing after death. With approval of all other heirs, the Executor may choose to honor such a statement, but is under absolutely no obligation to do so. Your brother has acted improperly, and his action is criminal theft. It is unlikely the... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: A final accounting of assets, etc. has been filed. I had to sign an agreement to this. Will I receive a check?
C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Mar 15, 2021

Many lawyers like to have inheritors sign off on distributions to protect the Executors and/or Trustees and help guard against quarrels after the fact. Hopefully you didn't sign anything that you didn't understand ... which no one should ever do. If the form showed you were going to... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: Is there any way to get around buying a sibling out of a property, in a situation where there is no will?
C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Feb 28, 2021

No. Unless the sibling wants to give his or her share to you. If there is debt and the sibling doesn't want to share in the debt, you have some additional negotiating power. And if there are other assets, maybe the sibling would rather have those assets and let you keep the real estate. If... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My father passed away in April 2020. His estate was filed into probate in August 2020. I am one of the beneficiaries.

There were 2 properties listed in probate. A house and 5 acres of empty land. The house sold and the buyer paid and it closed on February 12, 2020. The 5 acres of empty land still needs to be sold, property taxes are $400 per year and that has already been paid for 2020. There are no other expenses... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Feb 24, 2021

It is up to the Trustee when to distribute funds to the beneficiaries. The trustee has the right to make interim distributions before everything is final, but is likely that the Trustee prefers to get all income taxes settled before making distributions. It is not unreasonable to delay... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: My mom and I refinanced her house almost 2 years ago, she passed in Dec. Now my brother want to take it.

At the time the house was refinanced he had the option to be on the mortgage and he said he wanted no part of it. Our mom passed away on Dec 1,2020. As of Feb 20, he now want to take the house for himself and sell it. What options do I have? I am currently living there with my 2 oldest children.... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Feb 23, 2021

Your brother’s age is irrelevant. Who signed the mortgage is irrelevant. If your mother had a Will, it dictates where her money and property goes. If she had no Will, the law decides where her money and property goes after enforceable debts are paid, but creditors must act to enforce the debts... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: I need a certificate of heirship for my great grandmother died in Ohio . She wasn't probated. What documents do I need?

She had 3 sons and two daughters. My grandfather was one. He died and it went to his wife, my grandmother then to her children, two aunts gave me their share. I only need to prove heirship to my great grandmother I have the rest. Thank you

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Feb 16, 2021

I'm sorry, but your question doesn't contain enough detail. You say nothing about your father or mother, whether you have already acquired his or her interest. If your great-grandmother had 5 children and had no Will (or the Will was not probated and is now lost), the property would... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My mom passed, only had joint checking with me, only adult child. Is probate needed? She has a small unsecured personal
C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Feb 9, 2021

Your question as posted is incomplete. If the only asset your mother has is a joint account with you, you are under no obligation to open an estate. Creditors have no claim to the joint account.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning for Ohio on
Q: My father passed. I am his health and living will poa. No estate. I want to keep his van that he owed 7000 on. How?

My father had no estate. He owned nothing. He owes 7000 on his van. I can't let it go. It's all I have of his. How do I get to keep his van? What can I do?

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Jan 22, 2021

Did he have debts? Did he have a wife or other children? Did he have a Will? Your question is more complex than anyone can answer without all facts. Someone needs to apply to become executor or administrator. If you want to know for sure, you need to consult with an expert probate lawyer.

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3 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Is there a penalty if no one steps up to go through probate court for someone who just passed away? There was no will.

The only asset was a bank account (no house, no car, no physical property of value) and the debts are known to be greater than the amount in the bank account and there was no will. There are younger adult children and they don't see the point in spending the time, money, and energy going to... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Dec 23, 2020

Assuming the family members are not co-signed or otherwise responsible for parental debts, there is no obligation to do anything at all. Creditors could open the estate, but almost certainly won't bother.

As Mr. Epling suggests, if the account has sufficient value to be worth some...
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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?

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Dec 9, 2020

It depends on her assets. It sounds like maybe she is a candidate for Medicaid asset protection planning. Most expert lawyers who do that work charge little or nothing for an initial consultation.

In addition to possible creation of a "Medicaid Trust", there is a provision in...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law, Elder Law and Probate for Ohio on
Q: I am the co- owner of my mother's banking & checking account. Do I have to pay back my mother's estate ?

My sister placed my Mom into a nursing home in May of 2019 for dementia. And then she hired a guardian for my mom in June 2019. I have lived in my Mom's home from May 2019 until now. I have been the co-owner of my Mom's banking and checking account since April 5, 2015. And, I used the... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Dec 2, 2020

We handle guardianship cases, but I do not hold myself out as a guardianship expert. If there is a clear-cut answer to your question, I don't know it. Like my colleague Mr. Epling, it would require some legal research.

I'm assuming the funds in the joint account all came from...
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My father passed away he was my step father raised me for over 50 years. My siblings are trying to cut me out. Can they?

I have a half sister and my father adopted my nephew so I have an adopted sibling also I was told there is a will that is 30 years old that I am executor of but my adopted sibling has it I have not seen it I know they're going to go through probate and they're not telling the probate... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Dec 2, 2020

These "hidden will" cases are very difficult. It is a violation of Ohio law for someone to conceal a Will, but proving they have it is almost impossible. You can try to find the lawyer who drafted the Will. Unless you can find the original Will, this is going to be difficult, and you... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My Dad died last week & my sis is executor. She is taking valuable items out of the estate for herself.

She is also a beneficiary along with only my brother and I. She has her children whom aren’t beneficiaries going in as well and taking out items. I live out of the country and she wouldn’t listen to me that executors have to act in the best interest of the estate and not personal gain. I... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Nov 28, 2020

She won't listen, so the only option is for you and your brother to hire an expert probate lawyer, and probably file your own action to be appointed and to remove her. At a minimum, you need to keep good notes of what she is doing and need to meet immediately with your own lawyer. Most... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: No will, small estate; but needs probate. I have all information. What is considered "customarily" fee for Stark County

My relatives had no children, and my mother is next of kin; but very elderly. I will be appointed administrator. Just need to fill out Release Form for Aunt and then full probate due to Uncle being survivor. Only had a house and one car. I am able to provide all records of assets, liabilities,... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Nov 28, 2020

There are exceptions, but in my experience no matter how the attorney charges (hourly, fixed fee or by court fee schedule), a general rule of thumb is 2% of assets. Probably higher if the estate is very small and there is no Will ... which always complicates things. If you are as well organized... Read more »

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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.

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Nov 15, 2020

An amendment to a Will is called a "codicil." It must be executed with the same witnessing formalities as a Will. If you did this Will yourself and did not have it done by an expert estate planning lawyer, there are probably other things that are not clear and you do not realize it.... Read more »

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4 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: Does a will have to go to probate in Ohio if there no assets to speak of?

My father passed away last month. The attorney who did the will is retired, possibly deceased. The bank named in the will as Executor has since been sold. They are telling me they don't do that, even though the will names the bank or it's successor. There is no real estate involved. Mom... Read more »

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Nov 9, 2020

Your question is a bit rambling, but if I understand that he owned nothing except a joint bank account, no, you are not required to probate his estate. Even if he owned a car, it can get transferred outside of probate.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Real Estate Law for Ohio on
Q: My parents n siblings r all passed n the house is still n my dad's name. Can I sell it or what do I need to do
C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Nov 4, 2020

You do not own it so you cannot sell it. In order to own it, someone must open a probate estate ... but whether you own some of it or all of it will depend on the language of the Will. And if there is no will and your siblings had children, some of the ownership will pass to them.

You...
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2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: Car stuck in probate how to get it

my situation is now that i’m older i’m trying to get the title of my grandfather’s classic car to restore it. problem is we have possession of the vehicle but no title. probate court was closed in 2010 any help would be great state ohio

C. Lawrence Huddleston III
C. Lawrence Huddleston III answered on Oct 25, 2020

You will need to file an application in probate court to re-open the estate and transfer the vehicle. It is not at all unusual for an asset to be forgotten and not included on the inventory and account. If all the beneficiaries are still living, it is pretty routine. It can be a bit more of... Read more »

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