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Everything posted by KayakAngler

  1. We've contacted a local atty (California) regarding trusts & estate plans, but I think we need help in finding a trustee. Any suggestions? I think we'll need a professional trustee or team who can manage assets, disburse funds, do recordkeeping and taxes, and manage healthcare. We'd like to be able to define the basic structure of the team now, develop a system of reasonable checks and balances, and be able to activate the system when needed. What would be a good structure? Who are key people we need to contact? Keep in mind it might be years before we need to activate the system, based on our health status. BACKGROUND Husband -- needs much home care, wheel chair bound, mentally able, currently manages finances Wife -- still working but will retire soon, provides 80% home care to husband, not suited to manage finances other than basic bill paying Children & close relatives -- none SCENARIOS OF CONCERN: A. Wife dies first, husband will need care and his abilities may have significantly declined. B. Husband dies first, wife will need financial management & possible health assistance C. Both become incapacitated & need significant assistance Health staus can change quickly, and we need to be able to have things in place. Thank you!
  2. harrylime: I'm going to mention my concerns to the atty. I'll be patient, but I want to be informed. I'm afraid sister has a history of bad decisions regarding this matter. Thank you for your sage advice!
  3. harrylime: > Therefore, my guess would be that phrases such as "power to control," "intentionally," and "neglects or refuses" are interpreted fairly narrowly. And "reasonable cause" is interpreted pretty liberally. • that's what I expected, thanks! > a good case for asking the court to charge any tax-related penalties and interest solely against your sister's share of the probate estate • agreed. Progress report: • atty #2 empathetically called sister with my permission • sister accepted his offer of assistance, saying she felt overwhelmed • sister made an appt with atty #2, agreeing to bring in all the papers Question: • if sister cooperates and is appointed, will Atty#2 be able to keep me informed? - i.e. will there be a confidentiality issue? Thanks again to all responders! You can't imagine how helpful you've been.
  4. harrylime: Thank you so much! Yes, long distance it must be. Atty #2 gave me his e-mail address, so I sent him info in advance of our phone consult. As a result, he understood the situation quicker, and was more organized. His plan was a better too. Both attys suggested we start the flame on low and turn it up later, if need be. I don't know how mean and nasty this is going to get, but the law you referred to is a comfort to me, just in case. Any idea what might be some common examples of "reasonable cause" under ORC 2107.10 (A)? Also, thanks for your valuable suggestions regarding fees, etc. You've been a great help!
  5. Thank you all for your prompt and insightful replies! Recent Developments: I spoke with an Ohio probate atty this AM. His suggestion -- send sister a lawyer letter • requesting her to file the will and have her atty contact him • saying if no action in X days, we will be forced to file as if there's no will w/ me as exec • if sister initiates action but then stalls, she will be violating court timelines • retainer $5k, may be able to have it taken from the estate Tax_Counsel: • the atty said he'd check with the court and find out if probate was ever opened • as to my delay, around the date of death my husband was dianosed with a crippling chronic disease -- I became his primary care giver, in addition to my full-time job - also, many alcoholics are quite functional despite their drinking - this has always been the case with my sister, until recently - earlier on I was afraid that any direct inquiry would be construed as a lack of trust - this could have damaged a relationship I valued - my husband and I are financially OK, so we had no pressing financial need • sister has formerly been financially independent, reliable, and honest - until recently I had no reason to believe that her situation has changed - however, I now realize that now anything is possible harrylime: Thanks! The atty made that same point this AM. pg1067: I'm not a lawyer! I assumed these things take time. Also, I had a lot on my plate, and never doubted my sister's ability to perform her fiduciary duty, until recently. Please see my reply to Tax_Counsel above. > As far as the will, have you asked her for a copy? If not, why not? • covered this in my reply to Tax_Counsel > If, in fact, probate has not been started, your sister is nothing more than a person nominated in a will and is not actually the executrix • Acknowleded, this is why I put executrix in quotes in my post's title. > All of which makes the passage of two and a half years without you doing anything even more surprising • covered this in my reply to Tax_Counsel • respectfully disagree: given my husband's situation, my full-time work, my desire to maintain cordial family relationships, my lack of legal knowledge, my sister's long previous history of honesty and financial reliability, and my lack of pressing financial need, I think I acted reasonably • hindsight is a wondeful thing, because things previously clouded in doubt appear obvious; unfortunately, I can't go back in time > it may be very difficult for you to prove your allegations regarding alcohol abuse. • agreed; as I stated above, many alcoholics are quite functional despite their drinking, this has always been the case with my sister, until recently • right now the atty's suggestion makes sense -- send her a lawyer letter, monitor her subsequent behavior, and take action based on how she responds FindLaw_AHK: Thanks for the link! I'll be talking with another atty tommorow. I think two opinions will suffice. Any thoughts on things to look for, or questions to ask that might help my choice of atty?
  6. My aunt died in mid-2010 in Ohio after relocating from Florida leaving an estate of approximately $1 million. She had two nieces, me and my sister, as surviving next of kin. I live in California, and my sister lives in Ohio. Shortly after my aunt's passing, my sister stated that the decedent had a will in which she was named as executrix. She also stated that the estate was to be split between us, and that the will makes me executrix in case my sister is unable to perform her duties. Recent converstions with my sister indicate that she has not yet filed the will with probate court. Also, she has not shared a copy of the will, nor any written accounting of the assets with me to date. My sister has a 30 year history of alcoholism, and I believe she is showing signs of alcohol dementia, namely apathy and an inability to accomplish tasks. I question my sister's competecy to be executrix. It's been 2.5 years since the decedent's death, and there appears that little, if anything, has been done. What can I do to get things moving? How can I get around my sister's apathy and inaction?
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