Even when well-planned, estate administration is not entirely automatic. Technically, when someone dies, ownership of their assets is automatically transferred to one or more people. However, until the paperwork memorializing the transfers is finished, the new owner cannot exercise the attributes of ownership.
The question often arises upon a loved one’s passing, “What do we do now?”. The most important legal aspect of someone’s passing is to change the ownership of that deceased loved one’s assets (called estate administration).
Notably, estate administration, even when streamlined and well-planned, is not entirely automatic. In the most technical sense, the moment when someone passes away, ownership of that person’s assets instantly transfers to one or more other people. However, until the paperwork memorializing those transfers is finalized, the new owner cannot exercise the attributes of ownership, including the ability to sell or give the asset to someone else and often even the ability to possess the asset (like a vehicle or real estate).
Read more about how to administer estates in Lee’s article in the Lima News here: Legal-Ease: How to administer a loved one’s estate
Source: LimaOhio.com, “Legal-Ease: How to administer a loved one’s estate,” by Lee R. Schroeder, July 6, 2019
Lee R. Schroeder is an Ohio licensed attorney at Schroeder Law LLC in Putnam County. He limits his practice to business, real estate, estate planning and agriculture issues in northwest Ohio. He can be reached at Lee@LeeSchroeder.com or at 419-659-2058. This article is not intended to serve as legal advice, and specific advice should be sought from the licensed attorney of your choice based upon the specific facts and circumstances that you face.