Most people have heard horror stories about siblings contesting a will or fighting over their inheritance. As a parent, how can you create an estate plan and reduce the chance of your children fighting?
There are some clear rules for your estate plan, according to AARP.
Be clear about your wishes
Money can bring out the worst in people, especially after a death. Do not wait to talk about your wishes with your children and extended family. It is crucial to be clear and concise with your wishes and to be in a state of mind that your children trust.
Have an estate plan in writing
No one can argue if your estate plan is in writing. You do not want your children to argue about what they believe you would have wanted or what they remember you saying. Your children may come to the table with different expectations of what their inheritance will look like. If you do not have a clear plan, it could lead to verbal and physical altercations.
Consider an equitable division of assets
To avoid sibling rivalries, it may be best to treat all the siblings as equals. Throughout your lifetime, you probably give to your children based on their needs. You may help one child with his or her bills and another with a deserved vacation. To avoid arguments and will contests, it is sometimes best to remain fair and equal.
If one of your children has disabilities, however, you may want to have an exception to the rule. Many estate plans specifically provide children with disabilities extra assistance.