Attempting to Avoid Family Inheritance Spats? Try This!

If your family already argues over insignificant issues, and your children already don’t get along, then you can only guess that the arguments will surmount when it comes to inheritances someday. Some families will stop at nothing to get a larger slice of the pie, and it can create extreme difficulties. Yet with some very detailed and careful planning, you may be able to avoid inheritance spats altogether because of your definitive instructions. You doubtless want to protect your family from rifts which could separate siblings from each other for the rest of their lives. Therefore, you want to take every precaution to make dividing your fortune non-negotiable.

According to Tim O’Sullivan, a partner and estate planning and tax attorney, family fights among children after death are common. A large percentage of families hire lawyers and battle for their fortune. Yet a parent who wants to create family harmony can design an estate plane that might preserve it. The more sophisticated your legal agreements are, the higher the possibility that you can avoid complications and difficulties. Most adults divide their estate with a will. While a will is better than no documents at all, this guide is not even powerful until it enters probate. There, the court will look at the will and compare it to laws to help divide the decedents’ property.

The will is essentially a set of instructions which are carried out by the judge in a probate court to the best of his ability. Some statutes may be honored while other provisions may be changed because of circumstances. Probate can take up to a year to complete and involves attorneys and fights of assets that were not mentioned in the will or only referred to vaguely. The process can be expensive, and can fuel the arguments that tear a family apart after the matriarch or patriarch dies.

Instead, if you are considering estate planning, you may want to think about a revocable trust. This is a less-complex method, and some estate planning aids say that the trust is easier to control. With this arrangement, you establish an entity into which you transfer the title of your assets in your name. If you die, then you can appoint a trustee to oversee the accounts and distribute the finances as you would have desired. Once the trustee is named, he or she needs to carefully distribute those assets how he or she has been instructed. Trusts can often eliminate the need for court battles, and kill the potential for lawsuits.

In addition to putting money in a trust, you may want to consider a living will or healthcare proxy. These are accounts which can fund your medical expenses later in life. You can state how you want to be cared for with the finances, and create documents outlining your care should you become incapacitated. While it may sound depressing to think about the possibility of disability, it is a good idea.

You should also specifically appoint someone to make decisions for your health if you are unable to make them for yourself in the future. This is because some states may not recognize your spouse as your rightful decision maker without a document proving it. By dividing your finances into a trust and carefully looking into your own future medical care, you will be able to protect your family from spats and arguments. If you believe that creating a will with the help of an attorney won’t cause dissension in your family, then this is also a viable option. Talk to a probate representative on this directory today to get more information on planning for your future!