Oregon Estate Planning Considerations
Oregon is a Common Law State, which means the rules governing the ownership, division, and inheritance of income and property acquired by a husband or wife during their marriage holds that subject to various qualifications, each spouse owns and has complete control over his or her income and property.
Last Will and Testament
The minimum age of a person competent to make a will is 18 or younger if the person has been legally married. The number of witnesses necessary to execute a will is two.
Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (UTMA)
The custodial arrangement terminates when:
- The minor child reaches age 21 for custodial transfers made by irrevocable lifetime gift, will, trust, or exercise of a power of appointment.
- The transfer can be delayed until the child reaches age 25 if specified in writing.
- The minor child reaches age 18 concerning other custodial transfers.
- The minor child dies.
Dying without a Last Will, the Oregon Laws of Intestacy
The estate assets go to the surviving spouse, as follows:
- If there are no descendants, —100% of the estate
- If there are one or more surviving descendants, all of whom are also descendants of the spouse, —100% of the estate
- If there are one or more surviving descendants, one or more of whom are not descendants of the spouse, —50% of the estate
If there is no surviving spouse, or if a portion of the estate does not go to the spouse:
- 100% to the descendants, by representation (see ORS 112.065)
If there is no surviving spouse or descendant:
- 100% to surviving parent or parents equally
If there is no surviving spouse, descendant, or parent:
- 100% to siblings, by representation (see ORS 112.065)
If there is no surviving spouse, descendant, parent, or sibling:
- 100% to the descendants of siblings, by representation (see ORS 112.065)
If none of the above:
- Intestacy laws outline further distribution steps to the level of grandparents and related individuals. See ORS 112.045(4), (5).
- If no legally described recipient can be found, estate assets go to the state of Oregon.
Death with Dignity
The Oregon Death with Dignity Act has been in effect since October 27, 1997. It has worked as intended and without flaws or any evidence of abuse or coercion.
The Oregon Health Authority monitors and enforces compliance with the Act and each February produces an annual report.
Oregon follows the Revised Uniform Access to Digital Assets Act to ensure that testators can retain control of their digital property and plan for its ultimate disposition.
Oregon does not impose an inheritance tax.
Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax (GST Tax)
Oregon does not impose a GST tax.
Oregon does not impose a gift tax.