Probate

Helping clients accumulate and protect wealth

The loss of a family member or close friend is one of the most difficult things we can encounter. Understandably, the thought of handling the estate through the courts creates stress and confusion for the very people who are still occupied with critical matters such as hospice care, funeral home services, and grieving family members. An Ohio probate attorney helps untangle the legal matters related to estate planning and probate as well as probate administration.

How Does Probate Work?

Probate law controls the way in which a county handles probate administration and distributes the estate of the departed as well as issues including name changes. Probate refers to the process the United States uses to address and resolve claims and issues which arise whether there is a will (testate) or not (intestate). 

Understanding Probate

There are four basic steps to probate, which Attorney Greg Port describes in the following video:

  1. File a petition in probate court and give notice to heirs and beneficiaries.
  2. Following appointment by the court, the executor must give notice to all known creditors of the estate and take an inventory of the estate property.
  3. All estate and funeral expenses, debts and taxes must be paid from the estate.
    Legal title in property is transferred according to the will or under the laws of intestacy (if the deceased did not have a will).
  4. The process may seem complicated, but with solid council from an expert in estate planning and probate, the process can go smoothly.

What Is Involved in Estate Administration?

After a person passes away and the initial probate filing has been made, the case goes through what’s referred to as the Estate Administration. This generally involves identifying property of the deceased, getting control of the property, paying bills and necessary expenses, and then distributing the property to the beneficiaries.

Why Choose a Probate Attorney?

The loss of a loved one is one of the most difficult things we can encounter. Dealing with the property, assets, and finances should be handled objectively and with confidence. Unfortunately, without assistance from an experienced legal professional, probate can become a complicated process.

When it comes to the complexities of legal matters, Port Legal is prepared to help you along the way. We make probate administration a smoother, much less stressful process in your time of grief.

Peace of mind

Without the support of professional legal guidance, it can further complicate the process, from procedural miscues to interpersonal conflicts that arise as an outcome. Dealing with the property, assets, and finances must be handled objectively and with confidence. When it comes to the legalities of probate law, Port Legal is representing clients in need of assistance with estate planning and probate. We ensure that legal matters ranging from estate taxes to probate a less stressful process in your time of grief.

No up-front fees

Most people want to know how much the probate process costs. With the law offices of Port Legal, there are no up-front costs or hidden fees. You won’t pay a dime until the probate process is completed and your loved one’s wishes have been fulfilled.

Extreme circumstances

Are you wondering where to start when it comes to taking care of a decedent estate— particularly their possessions? We specialize in difficult situations like hoarder households and unattended homes where the next of kin live far away. We take charge, relieving the stress and worry that come with these issues. We work with companies that organize and declutter homes and get the houses rehabbed and ready for sale.

Probate vs. Non-Probate: What is the Difference?

As you plan your estate, it is important to understand the difference between probate and non-probate assets. Probate is the process through which a court determines how to distribute your property after you die. Some assets are distributed to heirs by the court (probate assets) and some assets bypass the court process, going directly to your beneficiaries (non-probate assets).

What happens when a loved one passes without a will?

When someone passes away without a will, that’s called intestate. Intestate is from the Latin root word meaning no testimony. When someone passes away without a will, the United States law has specific procedures which must be followed.

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Looking for solutions for your loved one? Our free guide can help you in planning and managing legal affairs.

Why Greg Port?

Port Legal’s founding attorney Gregory Port has been providing strategic legal representation as an Ohio probate lawyer since 1990. He practices in the areas of elder law, life care Medicaid planning, estate planning and probate, and real estate. His experience and core values are the cornerstones of the law offices of Port Legal. He’s proud to be a specialized advocate for your interests. When you choose Greg Port, you can rest assured that you’ve chosen one of the most experienced and most client-focused probate lawyers in the state of Ohio.

Greg Port will guide you through the 4 steps of probate:

  1. File a petition in probate court and give notice to heirs and beneficiaries.
  2. Following appointment by the court, the executor must give notice to all known creditors of the estate and take an inventory of the estate property.
  3. All estate and funeral expenses, debts, and taxes must be paid from the estate.
  4. Legal title in property is transferred according to the will or under the laws of intestacy (if the deceased did not have a will).

While this process may seem complicated, Greg will walk you through it step by step so you’ll have the best outcome possible.

Ohio Probate FAQs

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Q: Does every estate in Ohio have to go through probate?

A: No, not all estates must go through probate. In fact, if your estate solely consists of one of the following, you may not need to go through probate at all:

  •       Survivorship deed (property automatically transferred to surviving owner)
  •       Assets held by a married couple
  •       Assets given a beneficiary designation
  •       Payouts of an insurance policy to named beneficiary
  •       Real estate that has on file an Ohio transfer on death designation affidavit
  •       Very small estates of less than $5,000 or the cost of funeral

For more please click here.

How a Living Trust Can Help You Avoid Probate Court

How a Living Trust Can Help You Avoid Probate

Q: What can survivors do to simplify the probate process?

A: Surviving family members can apply for a Release From Administration packet. This will make the proceedings significantly shorter if any of the following apply:

  •       The surviving spouse inherits the entire estate and the value is less than $100,000.
  •       The entire estate is less than $35,000.

For more please click here.

What Is Release from Administration in Ohio Probate?

Q: What are executors and administrators?

A: The person named the will as executor of the estate is responsible for taking care of the probate proceedings.  Where there is no will, that person named by the court to do the same thing is referred to as the administrator. Collectively they are called fiduciaries.

The fiduciary’s responsibilities are as follows:

  •       Provide valid will to the court when applicable
  •       Identify all next of kin and named beneficiaries
  •       Make an inventory of all the assets of the deceased and ensure their safety
  •       Discover and identify all debts
  •       Have an appraisal of all assets
  •       Ensure all debts and taxes are paid from the estate
  •       Oversee the distribution of assets to beneficiaries
  •       Keep detailed records of activities

For more please click here.

Three Tips to Managing A Family Member’s Assets After They Pass

7 Things You Need to Know Before You Setup a Simple Will

Q: How much does probate typically cost?

A: Court costs for probate cases are normally not more than $350. Executors can take a fee for themselves, 4% for the first $100,000 in assets, 3% for the next $300,000 and 2% for everything above $400,000.  Family members serving as executors occasionally choose not to take this fee. Attorney fees can be charged hourly or as a percentage of the total assets. A rough estimate of the attorney fees can be gathered by calculating 3-4% of the total assets.  Probate attorney and fiduciary fees cannot be charged until the conclusion of the probate matter, and are in most instances paid from the estate assets.

Probate Court in Ohio: Can You Do It on Your Own?

A General Overview of Probate Court in Ohio

Q: How long does probate last?

A: Probate usually takes at least six months to a year; this gives creditors time to come forward  and also simplifies taxes.

For more please click here.

Probate Court in Ohio: Can You Do It on Your Own?

Q: Can a will in probate be contested?

A: Wills in probate can be contested if there is reason to believe the person was not of sound mind when the will was made or was under undue influence by another.

For more please click here.

3 Essential Things to Understand Before You Contest a Will in Ohio

Q: What happens when there’s not a will?

A: Where there is no will it is called an Intestate probate and any next of kin may apply to be administrator, or they may choose to ask an attorney to serve. Beneficiaries are those found using the Ohio Statute of Descent and Distribution: surviving spouse, then children, then grandchildren, then siblings, then parents.

For more please click here.

7 Things You Need to Know Before You Setup a Simple Will

What Happens When a Family Member Passes Away Without a Will?

Talk to a Probate Attorney Today

Our initial exploratory consultations are completely free of charge. They’re intended to equip you to make the best decision for you, your family, and your business— there’s no obligation.

Are you ready to get started? Call 614-310-3110 or fill out the form to request your free consultation with our law office and take the first step towards navigating probate.

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