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Creating a reliable estate plan

When creating an estate plan, Ohio residents should consider their needs as well as the needs of those who will receive their assets. For instance, an estate holder could establish a legacy of giving by donating money to charity after passing on. However, this legacy could also be established by donating time and money while still alive as a way to set an example for future generations.

If family members are going to receive money, they should understand that it's a blessing and not an entitlement. Instead of learning to love money, beneficiaries should be taught how to use that money to do good for others. Family members should also understand that they may receive an inheritance based on their needs. This means that a school teacher who has worked hard will get more than a doctor who already has money.

To protect funds from creditors or the bad habits of an heir, money can be placed in a trust. Those who create the trust can place limitations as to how it is used or how a beneficiary can earn a distribution of funds. For example, a trust could be arranged so that proceeds are only used for a wedding, a college education or for charitable purposes. The trust could also stipulate that funds can only be used if the beneficiary remains employed.

Estate planning is something that may be done either independently or in collaboration with family members and other beneficiaries. Generally speaking, estate planning should be seen as an ongoing process that involves passing down assets as well as passing down values. An attorney may be helpful in creating estate plan documents or reviewing those that are already in existence.

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Kroener, Hale & Penick Law Firm
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Batavia, OH 45103

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