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Ohio Beneficiary Designation Litigation Lawyer

Alternative ways of passing assets at death

There are now many methods of passing assets at death apart from the traditional will or trust.  I often refer to these as “will substitutes.” These methods include:

  • Joint and survivorship
  • Transfer on death
  • Payable on death
  • Beneficiary designations, such as the designation of a beneficiary to a life insurance policy, annuity, retirement benefit, etc.

It is very common that when there is a will or trust contest, there are also beneficiary designations which changes who receives the asset at death. Thus you have a double case, first to challenge the will or trust and second to challenge the changes of beneficiary designations.

Changing a beneficiary

In some situations, the documents which change the beneficiary do not even require a witness or a notary and are very easy to secure when the owner is near the end of life. Unfortunately, banks and other financial institutions do not always clearly distinguish between joint and survivorship which passes an account at death to the survivor as opposed to a power of attorney account, which only gives that person the power to draw upon the account during the lifetime of the owner.

All of these transactions fall within the overriding category of probate litigation and they are often raised through a declaratory judgment action or a concealment of assets action. The steps taken in one of these cases are similar to steps that were discussed under the topics of will contests and trust contests.

Contact a dedicated Ohio beneficiary designation lawyer

I am one of the few attorneys in Ohio who is willing to consider these cases on a contingency fee basis. This makes my services available to people who cannot otherwise afford to pay a lawyer on an hourly basis. I am also willing to consider an hourly fee arrangement or a combination of the two. Call 419-244-3006 or contact me online to schedule a free initial consultation in person or by phone. I handle cases throughout the state of Ohio. For examples of some of the cases I have handled, see Sample Cases.