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Preparation of Wills in Ohio

Planning a will is significant since it specifies how the estate of the individual will be distributed after death. An Ohio Will ensures proper distribution of the real and personal properties of the individual according to his or her wishes, and prevents further dispute amongst the successors. Read along to know more about preparation of Wills in the state of Ohio.

Basic requirements

Everybody cannot create a will in Ohio since there are certain limitations and requirements, which have to be abided by, as indicated below:

  1. To prepare a Will, a testator must be at least 18 years of age and above.
  2. The testator must of sound mind, i.e. capable of reasoning and decision-making at the time, and not be under any form of restrain.
  3. The Ohio last will and testament has to be signed by the testator or by someone else in his presence and under his express direction.
  4. Two or more witnesses have to be present when the will is prepared, and they must be of or above 18 years of age.
  5. The will must be in writing - might be in handwritten or typewritten format.
  6. Any one can be appointed as the beneficiary through an Ohio Will.

Purposes for an Ohio Will

Creation of an Ohio Will is done for the following purposes:

  • Distribution of Property: The legal document enlists the intention of the decedent regarding the distribution of his or her property and assets. The Ohio laws don’t impose any major restrictions on property distribution.
  • Appointing guardian for minor heirs: Wills can be formulated to nominate an adult individual as a guardian for the minor children.
  • Appointing an administrator: Ohio Wills also allow the testator to name a person as an executor or an administrator, who will be responsible for overseeing the written conditions in the Will.

Notable Exceptions – The named beneficiary on the decedent’s life insurance policy can’t be changed through a Will. Under certain conditions, the surviving spouse might be entitled to a share of the estate, even if he or she is excluded from the Will.

Modification and Revoking of an Ohio Will

The testator might make any change in the Will, whenever he or she wishes. The alterations or modifications need to be done through the codicil, in accordance with the probate laws of the state.

Revoking of an Ohio Will can also be done according to a testator’s wishes, by burning, tearing, cancelling, obliterating or destroying the written document. The testator might do it himself, or may request some one else to do it in his presence or through express written directions. Cancelling an Ohio Will might also be done with another subsequent written Will or codicil.

Probate and Estate Taxes

Probate laws in Ohio ensure that the designated beneficiaries receive their share of the deceased’s estate, after his debts and expenses are paid off.

Usually, the individual has to pay estate taxes if the value of the estate goes beyond a specific allowed point.

Intestate condition

If an individual dies without making a Will, that condition is termed as ‘intestacy’. In such situations, the Ohio State Laws determine how the property gets distributed.

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