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Resentment and favoritism may contribute to probate litigation

On Behalf of | Jan 21, 2019 | Probate Litigation |

Most Texas parents want to take steps to help their children feel as equal as possible. Of course, even with the parents’ best efforts, some children may still feel as if they got the short end of the stick on many occasions. If parents do not discuss their estate plans with their kids before their deaths, the children may be left with hard feelings that they may want to address through probate litigation.

A major issue that could lead to hard feelings is if a parent chooses a person to act as executor of the estate who may not be the right fit. The parent may think that he or she should choose the firstborn child because it would be fair, but another child may have the detail-oriented mindset or even professional skills that would be valuable during probate proceedings. The skilled child may think that he or she should have been chosen, which could cause resentment, and if the firstborn does not handle probate well, mistakes could lead to further conflict.

Because children, even those of adult age, can feel scorned when a parent appears to show favoritism, another situation that could lead to conflict is if the parent leaves more of the estate to one child than the others. The parent may think this is fair because that child handled the majority of the caretaking when the aging parent needed it. However, the other children may still think they should receive a more equal portion of the estate, or they may even think that the favored sibling coerced their parent into giving him or her more of the estate.

Many family dynamics are often contentious, even if it is not outwardly obvious. When major life changes occur, like the death of a parent, emotions can run high, and that tension could reach a breaking point. If probate litigation results due to conflict over an estate, involved Texas residents may find it useful to enlist the help of knowledgeable attorneys.