Probate Court Wills & Trusts

Estate Planning Lawyers

Whether you want to start your estate planning or you are going through the probate process, you are looking for solutions that will work now and into the future. At the Wickliffe, Shryock, Crook & Associates L.L.P., we have been helping Cleveland area families with their estate planning and probate concerns since 1979. Our attorneys are ready to help you find the solutions you have been looking for.

Dedicated Trial Attorneys Protecting Northeast Ohio

As you get older and you face new legal challenges, you have to start looking for new solutions. One of the biggest concerns for our clients today is long-term care planning. When you take the time to work with an experienced lawyer and accountant, you can protect yourself and your family from financial loss and the depletion of your estate , so your assets stay with your family.

Taking a close look at your situation, we can use the following tools to come up with a plan that works for you:
Wills
Family trusts
Lifetime trusts
Living trusts

Using these tools in conjunction with sound financial planning can greatly protect your assets. Our firm works with a number of financial planners and accountants that can be called in if you do not already have one yourself. If you have a current financial planner, we can work with them to tailor a plan to your concerns.

Medicaid Planning

In order to take advantage of Medicaid, your estate needs to be depleted to a very low level. The federal government will review your accounts form the past five years before it fulfills your requests. If you are considering applying for Medicaid, we can help you prepare necessary financial documents so you get the help you deserve.

Probate

The probate process can be unnecessarily complicated and confusing. What's worse is that it only arises when you and your family are dealing with the stress of losing a loved one. We can help you through the entire process so you make the best possible decisions for your family. We handle all matters of probate in a professional and thorough manner, allowing you to get back to your life.

Wills and Trust Attorneys

What will happen to your family and your estate after you die? No one enjoys thinking about this, but it is an important question. If you die without leaving a will, trust or other estate plan , your family will not know your final wishes. They will also be faced with the unpleasant process of dealing with your estate in probate.

Shryock, Crook & Associates L.L.P. provides estate planning assistance to people in the Cleveland area. Our attorneys can help you plan for the future and save your family some of the time and expense of probate. Please call our Lake County office at 440-373-7326 to schedule an appointment.

Functions of Wills & Trusts

If you die intestate (without a will), your estate will be divided and distributed according to Ohio law. If your death leaves minor children without parents, the court will decide who becomes their guardian.

A will is a transfer mechanism that is appropriate for minor assets and property. You can specify who gets your possessions, including your house. You can also name people as guardians of your children. A will lets you choose who will be the executor of your estate.

Wills are helpful for the matters noted above , but trusts are better for more complex assets. A trust can hold assets for minors until an age you specify. They offer more protection from probate expense than wills.

Living trusts are active during the life of the grantor and may be set up to continue after the grantor dies. This type of trust can provide for the grantor in the event he or she becomes incapacitated. It also can avoid probate if the grantor's assets were transferred into the trust before he or she died.

Lifetime trusts are used to protect assets you leave your beneficiary from creditors, judgments or divorce. The trust is in effect for as long as the beneficiary lives. You can specify when or if the beneficiary assumes control of the trust.

Family trusts transfer assets to a grantor's spouse, children or grandchildren .

Will Contest Lawyers

After a person dies and his or her estate passes through probate , the family and heirs have an opportunity to challenge it. They may disagree over how the will or trust was created, or they may believe assets are being mismanaged. Will and trust contests and probate litigation are complex processes that require the assistance of an experienced attorney.

If you need help contesting or defending a will or trust, contact Shryock, Crook & Associates
L.L.P.
Our Cleveland-area probate litigation attorneys can guide you through the probate process. We understand that this is a difficult time for your family. We will work hard to resolve the issue in a timely manner. Please call our Lake County Office at 440-373-7326 to schedule an appointment.

Contesting a Will or Trust

In general, people challenge wills and trusts when they believe there has been misappropriation of family assets.

Estate disputes can arise for many reasons, including :
Refusal to provide information on trust funds or property
Spendthrift/waste-of-trust issues
Undue influence on the grantor (last-minute or death bed will changes, non-family as late additions)
Addition of caregivers to wills (nursing home and home health care aides)
Last-minute addition of non-profit or charitable organizations
Breach of fiduciary duty

We represent heirs and trustees, as well as other people who may challenge a will or trust. We can also represent heirs who live out of state but are heirs in Ohio.

It takes a knowledgeable attorney to find effective solutions to estate disputes. You also want an attorney who can argue your case in court if that is necessary. We are experienced trial lawyers who regularly handle complex trials involving financial matters. To make an appointment, please call 440-373-7326 or contact us online.

Determination of Heirship

Many Ohio towns have been losing population for years. Younger people often move to a larger city or out of state, leaving behind elderly family members. If one of these family members dies intestate (without a will), the probate court must decide who inherits the estate. Sometimes, people need assistance locating the surviving heirs.

Determination of heirship is a specialized probate matter. When a probate court needs to find missing heirs, an experienced attorney can help determine if the person is legally entitled to share in the estate in question and in what proportion.

Shryock, Crook & Associates L.L.P. works with heir-locating firms in lost heir matters. We represent heirs and estates in courts throughout Ohio. Please call our Lake County office at 440-373-7326 to schedule an appointment.

We have experience with heir location and determination. We can represent heir locators as well as individual heirs . To make an appointment, please call us at 440-373-7326 or contact us
online.

Contact Us

When you take the time to do it right, both probate and estate planning offer a lot of solutions. Our firm is read y to help you find those solutions. Open weekdays from 9 a.m . to 5 p.m. , our Wickliffe law offices offer weekend and evening hours by appointment. Contact us today for a free initial consultation .