Have You Recently Relocated From Another State? Make Sure to Have Your Estate Planning Documents Reviewed

estate planning documents health care another state

Are My Estate Planning Documents Still Effective If I Move To Another State?

estate planning documents health care another stateHave you recently moved from another state or are you planning a move? One of the first things you should ask yourself is “Are my estate planning documents still valid and effective?” The first question can be answered more simply that the second question.

If you move to another state, technically if a will or trust were legally valid in the state in which they were executed, they should still be legally valid. Most state have laws that specifically state that a will is legally valid if it was legally valid in another state in which it was executed. A trust validly executed in one state should not be questioned in another state. What is controlled by those documents may differ though. Community property state and non-community states may treat what each of you and your spouse own differently. Also, states may differ in what a surviving spouse is entitled to by law and what a surviving spouse’s rights are by law regardless of one’s estate planning documents.

Power of attorney documents are even more questionable. Here in Ohio, a general durable power of attorney … Read More... “Have You Recently Relocated From Another State? Make Sure to Have Your Estate Planning Documents Reviewed”

The Importance of Ohio Health Care Documents During the Coronavirus Pandemic [UPDATED]

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Health Care Decisions During The Coronavirus (COVID-19).

PUBLISHERS NOTE: In the rush of the holidays, please do not overlook the importance of helping your family members review their estate planning and health care documents. Doctors are urging people to take this important step! This blog, first published on April 11, 2020, demystifies durable health care powers of attorneys and living wills. For the sake of your loved ones, please don’t put this off.

Coronavirus: Health Care Durable Power of Attorney Covers All Health Care Decisions

health care decisions estate planningA COVID vaccine is coming. So is the beginning of winter.  While a reason for optimism for 2021 exists, the winter of 2020-2021 will be unusually dangerous, with the coronavirus running rampant. Experts are pleading that individuals have their estate planning documents in order, especially power of attorney for health care documents and living wills (advanced directives). With many long-term care residents unable to meet personally with their loved ones, it is more important than ever that those loved ones know the wishes of an individual and can act on their behalf.


At least here in Ohio, by virtue of being a spouse or relative of someone does not give you … Read More... “The Importance of Ohio Health Care Documents During the Coronavirus Pandemic [UPDATED]”

2020 End of Year Estate Planning Thoughts

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End Of Year: Don’t Forget To Review Your Estate Planning Documents! [REMINDER]

estate planning tax law changes assets gift tax exemptionThe end of the year is soon approaching. As with any election year and a change in presidency, there is some uncertainty as to what the near future holds in terms of estate planning and tax law changes. There are also things that should be reviewed on a regular basis regardless of the political climate.

In every calendar year, one can gift up to $15,000 to any other individual without having to file a gift tax return or use any of one’s estate tax/gift tax exemption. A married couple can gift up to $30,000. Should one wish to reduce his or her taxable estate or begin passing on wealth to the next generation, it would be wise to make gifts before the year has ended and this year’s annual exclusion is wasted.

Now is also a good time to review one’s estate planning  documents and how one’s assets are titled. Are beneficiary designation still appropriate? The SECURE Act which was recently passed has reduced the time period for non-spouses to take designations from an inherited IRA. Also, distributions are taxable on traditional IRAs but not … Read More... “2020 End of Year Estate Planning Thoughts”

Can I Complete My Ohio Estate Planning Documents Remotely During COVID-19?

ohio estate planning documents covid-19

Ohio Wills Cannot Be Completed Through Remote Technology, But What About Other Ohio Estate Planning Documents?

ohio estate planning documents covid-19More individuals are focusing on estate planning during the pandemic, but people are also more concerned about venturing out during these unusual times.  A question that is coming up often is whether one can complete their Ohio estate planning documents remotely through Zoom or some other software.  The answer is yes and no.  Some ohio estate planning documents  only need to be notarized to be valid and remote notarization is now available here in Ohio.

A general durable power of attorney in Ohio only needs a notarization to be valid.  Ohio health care documents (livings will and durable power of attorney) need either two disinterested witness signatures or a notarization to be valid.  A document related to the transfer of real estate such as a deed or transfer on death affidavit needs to be notarized.  However there is a fair amount of a technological learning curve if one wants to try to get documents notarized remotely. There is also a separate charge involved for the service.

Last Will and Testament Must Still Be Completed In Person

What about a last will and testament … Read More... “Can I Complete My Ohio Estate Planning Documents Remotely During COVID-19?”

My Child Just Graduated High School. What are the Estate Planning Considerations?

estate planning documents HIPPA Authorization

Basic Estate Planning Documents For the Just-Turned 18 Year Old. Is it necessary?

estate planning documents HIPPA AuthorizationHigh School graduation is a culmination of one’s academic accomplishments at a scholastic institution.  It is also usually a time of change.  Upon graduation, one’s life is going to change and progress into another phase.  It may also be a time of change when it comes to estate planning documents, both when it comes to the graduate and the graduate’s parents.

Parents are considered by law the natural guardians of their minor children.  Minor children are those under the age of 18.  Therefore, those under the age of 18 have no great need for estate planning documents .  However, what happens when one reaches the age of 18?  He or she is now a legal adult and the parents no longer have a legal right to speak on behalf of or act on behalf of the child.  Therefore, when a child becomes a legal adult, one should strongly consider basic estate planning documents for the child.

Documents for the 18 Year Old to Consider:

A power of attorney for health care and possibly a living will in addition would allow the parent to speak for the … Read More... “My Child Just Graduated High School. What are the Estate Planning Considerations?”

Would My Ohio Living Will Block My Being Placed on a Ventilator if I Contracted Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

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What Does a DNR Order in Ohio mean?

A DNR Order (Do not resuscitate Order) Cannot Be Executed Unless Signed By A Physician

dnr order permanently unconscious coronavirusI received a telephone call a week or so ago from a client who was concerned that, based upon some things that he had recently heard, he may have executed some estate planning documents that would prevent him from being put on a ventilator if he contracted the coronavirus. I am sure that he is not the only one who has had that concern, so I believe that this is a good time to explain this issue in greater detail.

First, here in Ohio a DNR Order (Do not resuscitate order) form states that health care providers will not perform CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation), will not administer resuscitation medications with the intent of restarting the heart or breathing, will not insert an airway adjunct, will not de-fibrillate, cardiovert or initiate pacing and will not initiate continuous cardiac monitoring.

A DNR Order  may be DNR Comfort Care (effective immediately) or DNR Comfort Care-Arrest (effective upon cardiac or respiratory arrest). A DNR Order must be signed and issued by a physician. This is where much confusion comes … Read More... “Would My Ohio Living Will Block My Being Placed on a Ventilator if I Contracted Coronavirus (COVID-19)?”

REPOST: Estate Planning For Seniors In The CORONAVIRUS Era [Exclusive 20% discount during April!]

coronavirus estate planning 20% off


As we near the time that some of the shelter-in-place restrictions are being lifted, many of us will feel a bit more comfortable doing some of the important things we have not yet done. As you evaluate those items, please don’t ignore creating or updating your estate planning documents!

The Dayton, Ohio law firm of Holzfaster, Cecil, McKnight & Mues is offering a 20% discount for new clients on all estate planning documents and services during the month of April. We are reprinting below Attorney Joseph Balmer’s blog from April 1,2020, addressing the urgency for everyone (but especially for seniors) to review and update their healthcare documents, financial power of attorney and wills and trusts.

Holzfaster, Cecil, McKnight & Mues has been providing exemplary legal services to the Dayton area community since 1941. Please call us at 937 293-2141. Quality estate planning doesn’t need to be confusing or expensive! Our staff will gladly schedule you with an initial phone conference with Attorney Balmer to answer your questions and address your estate planning needs – all in plain English.

Mr. Balmer has been certified as a specialist by the Ohio State … Read More... “REPOST: Estate Planning For Seniors In The CORONAVIRUS Era [Exclusive 20% discount during April!]”

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