Legal-Ease: Avoiding probate one asset at a time

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 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.

While this hasn’t always been the perception about probate, the probate process has improved significantly as a result of simplification of federal estate law calculation formulas as well as administrative efficiencies that have been implemented by our local probate judges.

Many people have been encouraged to use trusts to avoid probate, but other options are on the table. Your best bet to transfer the ownership of your assets without much hassle is by categorizing each asset as probate or non-probate. Assets that have a specific contract attached that says how the ownership of the assets should transfer upon death can most often transfer without probate.

Probate is the process of paying a deceased person’s bills and transferring ownership of that deceased person’s property pursuant to the person’s will or Ohio law as overseen by the local probate court.

Many people have been told that probate is worse than the devil (or in my case, worse than the University of Michigan). However, avoiding probate has fewer negative attributes now than it has ever had. The improvement of the probate process comes from some simplification of the federal estate tax calculation formulas and administrative efficiencies implemented by our local probate judges.

Read more about probate and how to avoid it through careful planning in Lee’s article in the Lima News, “Legal-Ease: Avoiding probate one asset at a time

Source:, “Legal-Ease: Avoiding probate one asset at a time,” by Lee R. Schroeder, June 3, 2017

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