Is There a Right Way to Disinherit Someone?

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Choosing to disinherit a family member requires appropriate estate planning.

You have decided to disinherit a family member.

Perhaps another loved one needs the money more.

Maybe the person you are choosing to disinherit is irresponsible financially.

As I tell my clients, some children grow up and others just keep on having more birthdays.

Regardless, your estate planning must be thorough to ensure your wishes are followed.

According to a recent smart asset article titled “How to Disinherit an Heir,” how you disinherit someone may trigger unintended consequences.

Plan carefully when you choose to disinherit a family member.
You need to be thorough when you disinherit a family member.

You could simply leave someone out of your last will or revocable living trust.

Unfortunately, disgruntled relatives may question your intentions.

They may claim you simply forgot to include them!

If this happens, your estate could be embroiled with family fighting and unnecessary costs.

Ultimately, your “heirs” may end up being the attorneys.

Another option is to explicitly disinherit an individual.

When choosing this option, you may want to include the rational behind your decisions.

Although your last will may still be challenged, you will reduce the credibility of such claims.

When disinheriting someone, you should solicit the help of an experienced estate planning attorney.

In some states and under certain conditions, close family members and relatives may be entitled to make a claim on your estate.

This may include those who are unknown to you.

Other states may not allow for the disinheritance of spouse or children.

An experienced estate planning attorney will know the laws of your state and will help you make appropriate arrangements.

Reference: smart asset (June 1, 2020) “How to Disinherit an Heir”

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