Court of Appeals of Ohio, Sixth District, Williams
Pamela Schroeder, et al. Appellees
Daniel Meyers, Individually and as Executor of the Estate of Leland Meyers Appellant
Court No. 20131041B
W. Gallagher and Sara T. Schaffner, for appellees.
Stanley J. Yoder, for appellant.
DECISION AND JUDGMENT
1} This is an appeal from a November 22, 2017
judgment of the Williams County Court of Common Pleas,
Probate Division, determining that a handwritten paper
entitled, "Things my dad wants me to do," drafted
sua sponte by Daniel Meyers ("executor'), contained
no testamentary intent on behalf of his father, Leland Meyers
("testator"). It did not constitute a codicil to
the testator's existing will or in any way revoke or
modify the terms of the will. For the reasons set forth
below, this court affirms the judgment of the trial court.
2} Appellant, Daniel Meyers, sets forth the
following two assignments of error:
1. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN REVIEWING THE ISSUE OF
2. THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FINDING THAT THE PURPORTED
CODICIL WAS NOT A CODICIL.
3} The following undisputed facts are relevant to
this appeal. On April 10, 2012, the testator executed a last
will and testament prepared at his request by the law firm of
Newcomer, Schaefer, Spangler and Breininger located in Bryan,
Ohio. The will bequeathed appellant's estate, upon the
deaths of testator and his wife, equally to their four
4} On January 16, 2013, the testator's wife
passed away. On March 6, 2013, the testator passed away. On
March 7, 2013, testator's last will and testament,
prepared by the local law firm and executed by testator less
than a year earlier, was filed with the probate court.
5} On February 15, 2013, several weeks before the
testator passed away, the executor drove his ailing father to
the executor's place of business where the executor
summarily instructed him to sign a handwritten sheet of paper
entitled, "Things my dad wants me to do."
6} The executor had several employees, who knew
nothing of the substance of the matter, witness and notarize
the sheet of paper. The paper was initiated, drafted, and
controlled solely by the executor. It purported to materially
alter the distribution of testator's estate, arguably in
the executor's favor, shortly before the testator's
7} The record reflects that the testator never
changed or modified his actual last will and testament
executed the year before his death, nor did he seek to do so.
8} On September 14, 2014, the subject handwritten
document was admitted to the probate court. Appellees
subsequently initiated trial court action in order for there
to be a trial court determination as to the validity and
impact, if any, of ...