There are so many reasons why inheritance disputes arise after a family member passes. Sometimes, the deceased family member didn’t even write a will, to begin with. Other times, one family member wants more from the inheritance than he was given.
Of course, no one wants to leave their family with inheritance disputes alongside the grief of their passing. Hence, whatever life stage you might be in now, here are some ways to prevent Prinheritance disputes in the future:
1. Write a will now
It doesn’t matter if you’re 20, 30, or 60; it’s crucial to have a will now, especially if you are married and have kids. Even if you don’t have a family yet, if you have an inheritance, a pet, or assets that you would want to leave with someone specific, write your will as early as you can. If you pass away without one, your estate will be divided based on your local laws.
Moreover, without a will, your family might have to deal with lots of legal matters to split your estate. In worst cases, your estate might fall into the wrong hands and leave nothing to the people you care about.
2. Draft your will as needed
When a significant event happens in your life, such as a marriage, divorce, death, or birth of a child, draft your will accordingly. Doing so will prevent disputes in the future if you pass away unexpectedly. For instance, if you get remarried without changing your will so that your new spouse gets your inheritance, your ex-spouse might be the one to receive it.
3. Create a living will
A living will contains instructions on how you want to be treated in case of an emergency or incapacitation. In this type of will, you can specify the quality of life you want in your later years, whether or not you are to be resuscitated, and what treatments you want and don’t want to receive. With a living will, you can rest assured that your family members won’t fight about what to do about your healthcare in case you are unable to make your wishes known.
4. Have a durable power of attorney
A durable power of attorney designates a person to make healthcare and financial decisions for you when you are incapacitated. This designated person can also make decisions regarding your estate, investments, and legal matters.
Although having a durable power of attorney does not guarantee that other family members will not contest the person you designate, it does help prevent the majority of fights that can arise.
5. Work with a lawyer
To make sure there are no holes in your will, draft it with the help of your lawyer. If you have specific concerns, such as an estranged child that can cause trouble after you pass, they can help you address them while you’re still healthy and able-minded.
No one likes thinking about death, much less of what will happen to their family after they pass. However, leaving your loved ones with lots to fight about is much worse. Hence, while you are still young and of sound mind, write your will with these tips in mind.