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Ohio Probate Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: I have an insurance check made out to my mother's estate. Can I just deposit that in her personal account so I don't hav

She gave me power of attorney to write checks in her behalf and to oversee her account. But now that she's passed we didn't get the executor of the will and the will in time. She has no other assets no property no house no cars nothing

Joseph Jaap
Joseph Jaap
answered on Feb 26, 2024

The bank might or might not allow deposit of the insurance check. A Power of Attorney terminates when the person dies. So any use of that POA now would be unauthorized. If the bank won't accept it, ask the insurance company if it would reissue the check to an heir or beneficiary. If not,... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Collections and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Does my dad's life insurance policy have to go toward medical debt before being dispersed to beneficiary?

My dad passed away last summer. My sister (beneficiary) has been given a check from my father's life insurance policy and we are told the funds will be available in ~2 weeks. However, my dad has a high amount of medical debt left over. Is the life insurance money safe to be used or will... View More

Barry W. Kaufman
Barry W. Kaufman
answered on Feb 19, 2024

Proceeds from a life insurance policy, where the beneficiary is a named living individual(s), pass outside of the probate process, and the creditors have no claim to it because those proceeds are not part of your dad's estate.

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2 Answers | Asked in Tax Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My husband died 3 years ago. I have been paying 3 cc s I changed on since then. Can I stop paying? I’m 71 w no assets

These don’t show on my credit report

Randy Bryan Ligh
Randy Bryan Ligh
answered on Feb 19, 2024

More information is needed here. For example, based on your post, are you suggesting that these 3 credit cards are in your deceased hsuband's name only? Anyway, the short version is that if you stop paying then you are exposed to being potentially sued and the question is whether or not... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Tax Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My husband died 3 years ago. I have been paying 3 cc s I changed on since then. Can I stop paying? I’m 71 w no assets

These don’t show on my credit report

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Feb 22, 2024

As a widow at 71 with limited assets, you may have options to address the credit card debt incurred by your deceased husband. Since the credit card debts do not appear on your credit report, it suggests that you may not be legally obligated to repay them, especially if they were solely in your... View More

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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: I am listed as beneficiary on my father’s will. It by name excludes my sister. Should I be concerned about her contestin

The will excludes her by name. She says dad told her that she would be taken care of. She claims she is getting an attorney. He has passed away.

Nicholas P. Weiss
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answered on Feb 14, 2024

Yes. Most wills include provisions that disinherit anyone contesting a will. In this case, she is already disinherited, so there is no downside to her contesting the will.

On the other hand, will contests are HARD. It is very difficult to prove either undue influence or lack of capacity,...
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3 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: I am listed as beneficiary on my father’s will. It by name excludes my sister. Should I be concerned about her contestin

The will excludes her by name. She says dad told her that she would be taken care of. She claims she is getting an attorney. He has passed away.

Aaron Epling
Aaron Epling
answered on Feb 14, 2024

Assuming your father is still alive, he could communicate with her his wishes and this would reduce the risk of litigation. He could also initiate ante-mortem probate to make sure the will gets admitted while he's alive. If she's getting an attorney, then you probably need to speak to one as well.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: I have a 98 year old father. He has a will. Is there a way to avoid probate on is condo or does his will do that?

His will splits his estate 50-50 between my sister and myself. I have financial POA.

Nina Whitehurst
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answered on Feb 9, 2024

A will absolutely does not avoid probate. Rather, it guarantees probate. Avoidance of probate requires a different technique such as a trust or a transfer on death designation/document. An estate planning attorney can help you choose the best probate-avoidance technique for you.

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My adult child passed away and has no will, very little assets ,very little debt
Todd B. Kotler
Todd B. Kotler
answered on Jan 11, 2024

It's difficult for an attorney answering this question to know what "very little" means. Assuming we are talking less than a couple $1000, the family could file for an administrative relief from probate / summary administration. If the assets are even less than 1000 the family may... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: If an executor is on a bank account does that make the money theirs or does that money get considered in the will?

The will states any money in the bank or deposits on hold shall be divided.

Michael M Marques
Michael M Marques
answered on Dec 25, 2023

The issue here is whether the "executor on the bank account" is named as the beneficiary or a co-owner of the account. Bank accounts can have more than one owner and / or can be named in trust for (ITF) another individual, the beneficiary. If the executor also happens to be the co-owner... View More

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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: If an executor is on a bank account does that make the money theirs or does that money get considered in the will?

The will states any money in the bank or deposits on hold shall be divided.

Aaron Epling
Aaron Epling
answered on Dec 18, 2023

"on the bank account" is a bit vague. If the person named as executor was a beneficiary or a joint owner of the account, then that money is theirs, it's not subject to probate or the will, and they don't have any obligation to share it. If the executor has a bank account titled... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Is my husband able to collect his fathers personal affects?

My father in law passed away recently without a living will and my husband is next of kin, but his father was living with his niece at the time of death who will not contact us. We are trying to get his affairs in order and My husband was wondering if he was aloud to collect his fathers things from... View More

Todd B. Kotler
Todd B. Kotler
answered on Dec 13, 2023

Your husband will need to open an estate administration case in probate court to exercise his rights regarding his father's estate. His cousin (the father's niece) has a right to keep people out of her apartment. Thus the only way to force her to do anything will be to get an order... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: If my parents passed away and the cars are in probate is it illegal to drive them if I am executor?
Nina Whitehurst
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answered on Dec 11, 2023

You need to take care that both (a) the vehicles are insured as assets of the estate, and (b) you are driving them consistent with your duties as a fiduciary. If you are driving them to drop them off at a dealer for sale or you are driving them to and from a repair shop to be repaired to fix them... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: my neighbor passed away in late October, I am concerned his children may be trying to settle his estate without probate

We are in Ohio. He was a single man with no spouse to pass his real estate and property to. I am told there is a Will, but as far as I can tell there is not a survivorship affidavit on file. He is listed as sole owner of his house (with a mortgage), and I am told his youngest daughter plans to sell... View More

Andrew Popp
Andrew Popp
answered on Dec 4, 2023

The short answer is that you simply have some misunderstandings about the way the process works. If the title to your neighbor's house was in his name, only a legal representative can sell the house. That means probate. The alternative is if the house was in a trust or was set to pass... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: My husband was the executor of his mother’s will. We received a check in her name can he cash it? We live in Ohio.
Todd B. Kotler
Todd B. Kotler
answered on Nov 15, 2023

Has your husband opened an estate for your late mother-in-law? If not, no. Even if an estate has been opened in probate court it will need to go into the estate's account. As executor, your husband has a duty to marshal his mother's estate assets and distribute them according to her... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: Am I entitled to my dads share of his inheritance since he predeceased his mom? What does this letter I received mean?

I received a “Notice of Probate of Will” letter and it says I’m “A person who would be entitled to inherit from the decendent had the decendent died intestate.” My dad died a few years ago he had a will and his mother died a few months ago also with a will.

Beverly A Stull
Beverly A Stull
answered on Nov 10, 2023

You received the Notice because you are next of kin; it is just to inform you that your grandmother's will was filed with the probate court in the county where she lived. You will need to look online to see what the will says. You would be entitled to your father's share of your... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My late mother left 12 CD's and only listed the great grand kid's (minors) as beneficiaries. Now we can't access the $.
T. Augustus Claus
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answered on Sep 20, 2023

In Ohio, if minors are designated as beneficiaries on financial instruments like CDs without specifying a custodian, complications can arise. Under the Ohio Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (UTMA), assets can be transferred to minors with an adult custodian managing them. If no custodian was named,... View More

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Probate for Ohio on
Q: Request Order to Ohio Vital Statistics to obtain Original Birth Certifcate.

My son was adopted by his mother’s second husband changing his name and birth certificate.

My son has grown and his adoptive father has passed away. Son would like to have his birth certificate changed to have my name as his father. He has already changed his name back to what it was... View More

Aaron Epling
Aaron Epling
answered on Sep 18, 2023

Given these facts, I think any probate attorney may need to do some research to be truly confident as to the process needed to achieve the desired outcome. If changing the words on the certificate is truly the only desired outcome, then I'd start with the health department that issued the... View More

2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: How can i read someones will? My godfather always said that i was on his will but after he died his daughter say I’m not

He was from puerto rico

T. Augustus Claus
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answered on Sep 6, 2023

Certainly, in order to read someone's will, you should follow a legal process that typically starts by locating the will, consulting with an attorney who specializes in probate and estate law, and filing for probate if required. The will reading itself is not always a formal event but rather a... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Probate for Ohio on
Q: Had a close friend of my family pass away and am trying to figure out how next of kin works.

I had someone who was very close to my family pass away and he was adopted when he was little. He was an only child after being adopted but has a biological sister who is still alive and he has no other family at all. He had told multiple people around him that he wanted my mom to get his home but... View More

Andrew Popp
Andrew Popp
answered on Aug 30, 2023

For a definitive answer I recommend sitting down with a qualified attorney to review your circumstances in detail and advise you and/or your friend.

In the interim, the pertinent legal authority can be found at Sections 2105.06 and 3107.15 of the Ohio Revised Code. See links below....
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2 Answers | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Ohio on
Q: My father died recently and I have no contact with my siblings. Is there a way to find out what is in his estate?

I live in a different state and he was a not married.

T. Augustus Claus
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answered on Aug 28, 2023

In the event of a person's passing, their estate typically goes through a legal process called probate. During this process, the assets and debts of the deceased are evaluated, and their estate is distributed according to their will or the state's intestate laws if there is no will. To... View More

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