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The role of family conflict in estate planning

Ohio families may see more conflict over issues such as beneficiary designations and choice of guardians than wills or even powers of attorney, according to a survey by TD Wealth. Over 40 percent of estate planning professionals who responded to the survey said that family conflict was the overall biggest problem in estate planning. Domestic issues caused far more problems than changes in tax law or stock market volatility.

TD Wealth's head of private trust said that blended families, multiple marriages and younger spouses could all be sources of family fights. Family businesses were another common factor for disagreement. One conflict in those cases is that some family members work for the business and some do not; this causes fights about what is fair.

Estate plans require refreshing over time

For many people in Ohio, dealing with estate planning can be an unwelcome and emotionally jarring task. Since it involves the distribution of assets among loved ones and forces people to think about their deaths, many individuals are relieved upon completing the task. In addition, many people believe that once they have developed a will and related documents, they have done all they need to do to protect the future of their family. However, due to changing family circumstances as well as changing laws, it can be very important for a person to regularly review and update his or her estate documents.

Problems can arise over the years when estate planning documents go for years without being reviewed since it could impact the desired distribution of assets. When reviewing or updating an estate plan, there are several key priorities to keep in mind. While every estate plan should include a will, an advanced medical directive and a financial power of attorney, a review by a lawyer every 10 years or after a major life event can help to ensure that the plans remain complete and effective.

Protecting finances from divorce

People in Ohio who are engaged may want to make plans to protect their money in the event of a divorce. While it may seem cynical, doing so can ensure that the appropriate protections are in place in case something unexpected occurs. Finances can be affected by divorce as well as potential collections from creditors for balances owed by a partner.

Individuals may also find that it's easier to create an estate plan where certain assets remain separate property. As part of the process, inheritances should be deposited into shared accounts. This is so that estate holders can have more control over who receives the assets.

I'm broke from student loans so why would I need an estate plan?

How broke millennials can benefit from an estate plan

Contrary to popular belief, estate planning isn't just for the elderly, sick or special needs individuals.

Death and incapacity can happen without warning and without planning those left behind can be in for a disastrous ride.

But don't let your student loan debt fool you into thinking that you don't need a plan in place.

Here are some reasons why every millennial with college debt should consider executing an estate plan and what can happen if they don't.

How estate planning helps a business owner

It may be possible for an Ohio business to survive after the original or current owner decides to leave it behind. However, business owners need to have a plan in place to make sure that happens. Ideally, an owner has at least a will as part of an estate plan. This may give that person control over where assets go after he or she passes on.

Without a will or other estate plan documents, state law will decide who receives the decedent's property. In some cases, the person who receives it may not want it or be able to make use of it. When assets do pass, an estate plan may reduce the amount of tax paid on that transfer. This may be true at both the state and federal level. In 2018, the personal federal estate tax exemption is slightly more than $11 million.

Majority of dads say they don't get enough time with their kids

Almost a quarter of American fathers live apart from some or all of their children. That may be due to divorce, a breakup, or individual reasons. Child custody arrangements are generally supposed to support strong relationships between children and both of their parents. Nevertheless, a sense persists that fathers receive less favorable arrangements than mothers do.

Ohio law prohibits favoring one parent over the other due to gender. An experienced divorce or family law attorney can help you make a case for the custody and parenting time arrangements that work for you and your kids, whether you are getting a divorce or aren't married.

What are the first steps in estate planning?

While you may not want to think about the end of your life, it is a necessity if you want to make sure your loved ones are provided for. This means planning your estate. Knowing how to get started when it comes to estate planning in Ohio can be confusing. You may not have any idea what you need to do to get things going and start planning for what happens with your assets when you die. 

Time explains that the first step to solid estate planning is gathering information. You need to take inventory of your assets. You might be surprised at all the things you will need to account for. Remember to note any accounts you have, including retirement accounts. Make a list of your assets. Anything with any value should be included. You may want to list values of assets, too. Also, gather your paperwork. This is great time to get organized and get all this paperwork in one place. 

Establishing paternity: Basic facts

Typically, it is easy to determine whom the mother of a child is, which is why you don't often hear of establishing maternity. When a mother simply lists a man on the birth certificate, it does not necessarily mean that she has proved true paternity. Most people know that DNA testing verifies paternity, but other ways may establish it as well.

If you want to know who the legal or biological father of a child is, you will need to undergo the paternity process. When paternity is legally established, this does come with legal ramifications for mother, father and child. Ensuring that the child's needs are provided for is one possible reason for establishing paternity.

What is the true definition of a deadbeat parent?

The term deadbeat parent is heard a lot in Ohio. it is often used to refer to fathers who do not pay their child support. However, the legal definition of the term is a bit more involved and takes into consideration more factors. Because this term is derogatory and can be quite damaging to a person, it is important for you to fully understand what it means. 

According to the Huffington Post, a deadbeat parent can be a mom or dad. It does not apply only to fathers, but it is most often used to refer to dads because more of them are paying child support than moms. However, as times are changing and courts are giving both parents the equal opportunity in child custody cases, more mothers could end up having to pay and the term becomes more gender neutral.

Avoiding estate planning? Here's what you need to know

Thinking of death and end-of-life plans is understandably uncomfortable for most people in Ohio. Even more uncomfortable, perhaps, is leaving loved ones with a messy estate and no proper guidance during their time of grieving.

A proper estate plan is more than just an outdated will describing who gets what, although this is what most people think of when it comes to estate planning. While this type of planning allows for the passing on of inheritances and assets, it also can outline end-of-life care, minimize estate taxes and provide clear guidance for loved ones.

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