When you have more than one child, it may bring you comfort to think about your kids coming together and leaning on one another after your passing. However, in some cases, inheritance conflicts throw a wrench in the works and result in children facing off against one another in Michigan courtrooms after a parent’s death.
Per AARP, you may be able to avoid this type of situation by taking certain steps during estate planning. What are some of the efforts you might make to reduce the chances of inheritance disputes arising between or among your children down the line?
Communicate ahead of time
It may serve your family well if you share your plans for your estate with your adult children before your passing. If you have one child in mind who you wish to name as your executor, have a reason for why you are making this decision. Otherwise, you run the risk of this decision, alone, leading to hurt feelings and potential discord among siblings.
Distribute your estate equally
Unless you have a strong, clear reason for making unequal distributions to your children, try to resist doing so. Leaving children unequal amounts is a common thread in many inheritance disputes. If one of your children needs more financial help than the other, consider giving that child gifts while you are still around to do so to avoid causing conflicts.
The earlier you begin the estate planning process, the easier it may be to figure out ways to distribute your wealth as you see fit without causing unnecessary strife within your family.