Sibling Conflict in Estate Planning and Administration

Family is one of your most valuable assets. Transmission of wealth through your estate plan communicates many things to those you leave behind. It carries additional weight because it is your final statement. Through planning you communicate your interest in the ongoing lives of your loved ones.

Anticipating and avoiding conflict in estate planning is important. For some families the settling of an estate leads to estrangement or hard feelings between siblings and their descendants that can last for generations. Long submerged sibling rivalries can come to the surface after a parent’s death. Even in the best of families, children facing the death of their last surviving parent may become possessive, greedy and argumentative. [Read more…]

Providing for Minor Children in Your Will

Providing for Minor ChildrenAs parents you have probably created Wills that provide for the care of your minor children. Part of that provision should have been appointing a guardian who will provide a home for the child if both parents die while the child is still a minor (under age 18). Many people are unaware that a minor child cannot inherit financial assets outright. Any financial assets bequeathed directly to a minor child will be held by a court-appointed guardian of the child’s estate. [Read more…]

Estate Planning for Women

WEstate Planning for Womenhy is estate planning for women different than estate planning for men?  On average, women live about 6 years longer than men, a fact that has implications for their estate planning.

Women likely to entrust finances to spouse. Women who turn over financial matters to their husbands may assume that the husband will take care of any estate planning needed.  This is a dangerous assumption to make.  If your husband dies without a Will and you survive him, you may be unpleasantly surprised at how state law dictates the estate will be distributed. In Tennessee, if a person dies and is survived by a spouse and children, the spouse receives only one-third to one-half of the estate.    [Read more…]