Thousands of Ohio residents do not have an estate plan. Perhaps they do not believe they need an estate plan. Or, perhaps they believe that estate planning is too complicated and they do not even know where to start. Getting the right information is crucial. So, what are the basics of estate planning?

Well, for starters, most people will want to have a will in place. A will can dictate who will serve as the executor of the estate. The executor should be a trusted individual, oftentimes a family member, friend or attorney, who can marshal the assets that will make up the estate and see to it that all of the requirements of probate court are met. From there, the assets can be distributed to the heirs and beneficiaries, as directed in the will.

But, there are other estate planning documents that Ohio residents will likely want to consider as well. For example, many people can benefit from establishing a trust. These estate planning devices can help assets avoid the probate process and make a transition to new ownership easier. However, there is a wide variety of potential trust options, so Ohio residents will want to make sure that they consider the options carefully.

Lastly, there are some documents that are more useful in life: power of attorney documents. There are typically two different types: financial power of attorney and healthcare power of attorney. As our readers can likely guess, these documents appoint an individual to make choices for the estate planner if the planner is unable to do so, generally due to incapacitation, in areas concerning finances and healthcare, respectively.