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Using estate planning to prevent family fights

Oct 9, 2018 | Estate Planning

Writing a will often involves focusing on high-value assets, or at least property worth something financially. Of course protecting valuable assets is important, but what about items with little monetary worth but significant sentimental value? Ignoring these types of items during estate planning could be setting up future heirs for a fight. 

Estate plans are not only important for distributing property after a person’s death, but they also just make things easier for surviving family members in Florida. Leaving out personal property of any kind flies in the face of that idea. Something as seemingly insignificant as an old holiday decoration or a beloved childhood toy could trigger a fight among family members. 

The best solution is to include a list of all personal property and subsequent recipients in a will. In this way, even small items of sentimental value will be planned for. However, most people can go one step further by talking to heirs about their decision. Understanding the reasoning behind the decision to give one sibling a certain family heirloom may help quell any anger or frustration over the matter. 

Individuals in Florida can utilize common estate planning tools — such as wills — to make sure their heirs are not left with a confusing situation that is conducive to fighting. However, simply creating a will may not be enough. Although speaking about end-of-life matters is not always pleasant, it is better than leaving behind items of sentimental value without any clear explanation as to their distribution.