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The Law Office of
Stephen W. Wolf, LLC
26777 Lorain Road, Suite 709
North Olmsted, Ohio  44070

Estate Planning

Estate planning has many goals.  Among them are:

  • To allow you to live out the remainder of your time
  • To provide for the care and support of your minor children
  • To insure your property passes to your heirs exactly as you intend
  • To minimize the chance of a will contest (a suit over what you intended)
  • To minimize the work those you leave behind have to do in order to close your estate (by avoiding or minimizing the time they have to spend in probate court)
  • To minimize or eliminate your tax liability

Paths to Estate Planning Goals

Here is a list of some of the plans you might use:

  • Wills - To determine the disposition of your probatable property

Probate property is property that must flow through the probate process in probate court.  If the amount of this property is low enough, this can be a fairly simple process.

  • Trusts

A trust involves someone else taking care of your property.  An example of a simple trust is when you appoint someone to take care of property that belongs to your children while they are too young to manage it themselves.  Trusts can be permanent, called "irrevocable" or revocable, where you can take the property back.

  • Power of Attorney

A power of attorney gives someone else the authority to act as you would.  If you were out of state and needed to obtain license plates for your vehicle, you might sign a power of attorney appointing someone her in Ohio for that purpose.  A power of attorney can be as limited or limitless as needed.

  • Health Care Power of Attorney

A Health Care Power of Attorney causes someone you trust to have the power to make health care decisions when you cannot.

  • Living Will

A Living Will instructs medical care providers of your wishes as to what they should do should you become so ill that you cannot make those decisions yourself AND it is unlikely you will ever recover.

  • Transfer on Death (outside of probate) of:
    • Accounts
    • Property
    • Vehicles

You can transfer much of your property outside of the probate court.  After you die, your home, accounts and vehicles can be turned over to the person or persons you desire.  Until you die, you are in full control of this property.  You can change your decision.