When a person dies in Ohio, probate is the court-supervised process of estate administration. The deceased person’s executor has responsibility for gathering, valuing and distributing the assets of the estate during probate.
Review the guidelines about probate in Ohio to inform your estate planning process.
What types of assets require probate?
Generally, only assets you own alone must go through probate. For example, that means a home you own with your spouse is not subject to probate. Other probate-exempt assets include:
- Real estate and assets with a transfer on death affidavit
- Bank accounts and insurance policies with a named beneficiary
- Assets transferred to the ownership of a trust
Your estate may qualify for simplified probate if the value of its assets is less than $35,000 or less than $100,000 if all your property will go to your spouse. The estate can bypass probate if it is worth less than $5,000 or $45,000 if your spouse will inherit all assets.
What happens during probate?
When you create a will, you name a trusted person to serve as your executor. This person starts the probate process by petitioning the court for permission to administer the estate. After receiving permission, the executor will present your will to the court to determine validity, gather and value the estate assets, provide an inventory of the assets to the court, and pay the estate taxes and debts.
After taking these steps, the executor will distribute your assets to your heirs according to the wishes set out in your will. Usually, the process takes about nine months, including six months in which creditors can file claims against the estate.