Legal Guide

How To Locate A Will In Ohio

Finding Someone’s Will In Ohio

When settling an estate in Ohio, filing a will in probate is an important step. This is done by a family member, attorney, or any other person designated by the deceased. 

If you think you have a stake within someone is will, it would be in your best interest to obtain a copy of the last will and testament as locating a copy can be challenging at times. 

Are Wills Public Records In Ohio?

Wills are often not public record as individuals like to keep their last will and testament private. The contents of the will are known by people like the individual themselves, the attorney, and any other person designated in the will. 

A will becomes public record once the person who wrote it is deceased and the will is recorded or filed in an Ohio probate court. 

How To Obtain Copies of Records 

Often, the estate is probated within the county the deceased individual lived in at the time of their passing. However, it can sometimes be in the county the individual owned real estate in. 

Once the county is found, it is best to conduct an online search of that county’s probate court dockets. It will be simple to find the court’s online information as every county in the state of Ohio deals with probate. 

When the information is found, you must request the document’s copies in person. If an in-person appearance does not work, you can also submit a written request by fax or mail. A reminder that you may have to pay a copy fee based on the number of copies you need. 

What If I Cannot Locate Probate Records Online? 

There is the option of going to the probate court itself and asking for the documents you need. Probate clerks can be helpful and locate the state information based on the deceased’s legal name. You can view probate files and request copies if the estate has been opened. 

You can also contact an estate planning attorney’s office in the local area. They can assist you but will charge you for their services. 

If none of these suggestions work, the deceased’s probate estate may not be open yet. If you think this is the case, consult with a local estate planning attorney in the deceased’s county to learn more about your options. 

Ask An Expert

We understand that the passing of a loved one is a difficult matter, and an estate planning or probate attorney can make the process easier. Probate law in the state of Ohio can vary from county to county. The expert guidance from local estate lawyers can give you the assurance you deserve.

This article was sponsored by Heban, Murphree & Lewandowski, LLC, an experienced probate law firm based in Toledo, Ohio.

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