When it comes to being fair with each of their children, many parents with more than one child have likely struggled over the years. As a result, they may wonder what the best options are for doling out inheritances while creating their estate plans. Because disputed inheritances can often lead to probate litigation, many Texas parents likely want to avoid potential issues at all costs, but that outcome may not be easy.
If one child has experienced less success in life than another, parents could feel that it would be more fair to leave the struggling child more inheritance than a thriving and successful child. However, this reasoning may not sit well with the child who receives a smaller inheritance. As a result, he or she may feel a need to contest the contents of the will.
If parents hope to avoid such a scenario, they may wish to either divide their property as evenly as possible. They may also try to explain to their children ahead of time why they believe the division to be fair even if it is not equal. Parents could also potentially add clauses to their wills that disinherit heirs who attempt to challenge the documents in court.
Though avoiding conflict is something many parents have to deal with throughout their lives, trying to keep surviving children out of probate litigation is not always easy or successful. Unplanned issues could arise, and as a result, children would likely need assistance in ensuring that their parents true wishes are being carried out. If Texas residents believe that issues with a loved one's will are causing conflict, they may wish to speak with experienced attorneys.
Source: Forbes, "Aging Parents, Entitled Kids, Unequal Inheritance: Recipe For Fights", Carolyn Rosenblatt, May 4, 2017