Estate Administration

Probate of decedent’s estate.  Preparation and filing of federal and Ohio estate taxes. Transfer of assets to beneficiaries.  Preparation of estate and trust income tax returns. 

Estate administration services include both probate and non-probate matters. Even if an estate has no probate assets, there may be other administration issues such as preparation and filing of federal or Ohio estate taxes, transferring title of vehicles, payment of debts, and proper distribution of assets – either directly to beneficiaries or through a trust. 

Under Ohio law, most probate estates must be closed within 6 months. Also, the total court costs for an Ohio probate estate, regardless of the size of the estate, average about $200 to $225. 

My goal in estate administration is to assist you with dealing with the law and simplifying matters as much as possible. For example, I prepare all probate forms and can gather information about assets and asset valuations. I assist with transferring title of assets, including real estate, cars, bank accounts, brokerage accounts, stocks, and mutual funds. And I can prepare various tax returns in addition to estate taxes, such as the decedent’s final form 1040 and trust and estate income tax returns. 

I usually charge a flat fee for estate administration services rather than an hourly or percentage fee. The fee is based on the value of my services and is determined after I have an opportunity to review the estate. Some of the considerations are the size and complexity of the estate, whether or not federal or Ohio estate tax returns are required, and the type of assets involved. For example, it takes a lot more work to transfer title of stock where the decedent held all the original certificates rather than having everything in a brokerage account. 

The Ohio Supreme Court requires that payment of fees for probate estates not be made until the final account is prepared to file with the probate court.