Nancy L. Sponseller

Working for you & with you.

How We Work For You and With You on Probate Matters

After a death, it is common for the deceased person’s surviving family to immediately call the attorney’s office to schedule a meeting. It is not necessary that the attorney meet with the surviving spouse or other surviving family members before the funeral, or even immediately after the funeral, but, in many cases, particularly, where there are immediate family of the deceased who live out of state and are in town for the funeral, or where the surviving family members may have questions that they feel are urgent and need to be addressed, an in office meeting with the immediate family of the deceased can be scheduled.

At the Law Office of Nancy L. Sponseller, your first call will be to our legal assistant, Susie Simmons. She will get your information so that you can feel more comfortable about the probate process. Susie will then schedule an appointment for you to meet with our attorney.

Contact our Columbus, Ohio, law firm at 614-764-0423 for legal support during probate. We will work hard to address all of your issues and concerns.

Dublin Estate Administration Lawyer

At our law firm, you can expect the initial office consultation to be extremely informative. We will give you a basic overview of the probate administration process. For example, we will explain the initial paperwork required by the court in order to open the estate and give the executor/administrator the authority to act on behalf of the estate.

After the initial probate court filing, we will be provided a series of deadlines by the court. These include dates by which certain information must be provided to the court, including:

  • An inventory, which is a list for the probate court of all “probate assets” with a value for each asset listed as of the decedent’s date of death
  • An account of all assets coming into and all disbursements paid out of the estate “down to the penny”
  • An Ohio estate tax return (if one is required), along with any other tax returns that may be required based on the size of the estate

Sometimes in the course of the estate, it is necessary to recommend the services of other professionals outside this office, such as an accountant. We will not request any services without first obtaining your approval.

Assets Outside of Probate

There may be assets that pass outside of probate such as:

  • Joint with right of survivorship (JTWROS) accounts
  • Transfer on death (TOD) accounts
  • Payable on death (POD) accounts
  • IRAs/401(k)s that have a beneciary designation

And while these may pass outside of the probate administration, it will still be necessary to have the specific information for each non-probate asset for purposes of the Ohio estate tax return, if one is required. We will explain what steps are necessary for assets that are passing outside of probate and what estate taxes and income taxes may be involved.

Attorney Fees

All legal services are provided on an hourly rate basis and are based on the actual time incurred. Time spent each day is recorded as the services are rendered, with a notation as to what service is involved.

While in Ohio attorney fees in connection with Probate estate maters are not generally paid to the attorney until the final account is being prepared, you will be provided a periodic statement reflecting time that has been incurred, as well as all costs and expenses, so that you are kept informed with respect to the fees and costs incurred as we go along.

Helping You Understand the Complexities of Estate Tax Law

Since January 1, 2013, Ohio no longer has an estate tax on the property owned by a person who died a resident of Ohio on and after January 1, 2013. This applies regardless of the value of the assets and whether the person has a surviving spouse.

Our attorney, Nancy Sponseller, will help you understand the complexities of federal estate and income tax law and let you know how the law(s) may affect your loved one’s estate. Ranked in the Top 25 for women Super Lawyers, you can trust her to support you during the entire estate planning process.

Contact Our Probate Administration Lawyer Today

For skilled and knowledgeable assistance from an experienced probate administration lawyer, contact our Columbus law firm today at 614-764-0423 to schedule a free 30 minute consultation on probate administration.