Are Premarital Agreements Enforceable at Death Against the Estate?

April 4th, 2017

Yes. The Ohio Supreme Court allows premarital (antenuptial) agreements to be enforced even if those agreements limit the exercise of rights by a spouse upon death. Hook v. Hook, 69 Ohio St.2d 234, 431 N.E.2d 667 (1982). In other words, even though a surviving spouse has certain rights protected by Ohio statutes, that spouse may be deemed to have waived those rights when the decedent spouse passes away.

Estate Planning for Your Pets

January 9th, 2017

Pets are an important part of a person’s life. Often times people don’t consider what would happen if they pass away leaving pets behind. We want to make sure your pets are cared for in the event you pass away before them. We offer ideas and tips on estate planning for your pets.

What? My Ex Inherits My Life Insurance Proceeds?!!!

October 19th, 2016

Ohio Revised Code 5815.33 (formerly R.C. 1339.63) states that when a marriage terminates, then as a matter of law, prior beneficiary designations of ex-spouses are revoked. As an example, if I designate my spouse as beneficiary of my life insurance while I’m alive and married, and then we get a divorce, my (ex)wife is automatically revoked as my beneficiary.

Guardian Rule Proposal

December 12th, 2015

Proposed Rule Changes to the Rules of Superintendence Regarding Guardianships in Ohio

The Ohio Supreme Court is asking for comments regarding the Proposed Amendments to the Rules of Superintendence for the Courts of Ohio Rule 66.01 through 66.09. This proposal relates to all guardianships in Ohio.

Certified Specialist

February 18th, 2015

David D. Brannon now Board Certified as a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law by the Ohio State Bar Association

On January 12, 2015, The Ohio State Bar Association announced that it certified six attorneys in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law as specialists, including David D. Brannon.

What Happens If A Beneficiary In A Will Dies Before The Testator?

January 29th, 2015

The general rule in interpreting last wills as to who inherits property if a beneficiary predeceases (dies before) the testator (person whose will is being interpreted after death) suggests that one must survive the testator in order to inherit, otherwise the gift lapses (fails).

Many of the estates that I am involved in administering have that problem—one of the beneficiaries dies before the testator.

Basics of Guardianship Disputes

December 17th, 2014

The Legal Basics regarding Guardianships and Contested Guardianships in Ohio

The purpose of a guardianship hearing is to gather information in order to determine the best interests of the prospective ward. In re Estate of Bednarczuk (1992), 80 Ohio App.

You May Establish A Trust For THAT?

November 12th, 2014

When drafting trusts for non-tax reasons, clients and lawyers may get extremely creative in types of trusts that may be established under Ohio’s Trust Code. Because the Ohio estate tax was eliminated and the federal estate tax exemption is now over five million ($5,000,000), the format of trusts can be made more flexible to permit clients to accomplish a broader range of goals.

Income Tax Planning Becomes A New Focus For Estate Planners

October 23rd, 2014

After the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 were enacted, there were some immediate changes to the tax structure, especially for estate planners.