Think Ahead When Estate Planning and Leaving a Disproportionate Inheritance or Disinheriting a Child

HNWElder Law, Estate Planning

The majority of parents and grandparents set up their estate plans so that their children are significant beneficiaries. They also frequently distribute their assets equally among their children. However, more and more people today are adjusting their estate plans to leave more for one child than another. Disproportionate distributions of assets are not always done because a parent no longer gets along with their child. Sometimes, one child may have a lot more children or obligations than another and the parent feels the need to help this child more. Maybe one child is already wealthy while the others are not as successful. There are many reasons why disproportionate distributions and even disinheriting a child are becoming more and more popular.

There are some important steps to take when adjusting your estate plan to disinherit a child or provide disproportionate distributions. The first step involves identifying all of your beneficiaries. You should identify who you want to receive your wealth, who you don’t want to receive your wealth from, and how much of your estate you want to be distributed to each of these beneficiaries. Next, it is important to document your intent and possibly even the reasons why. Disproportionate distributions and disinheritance can often be the source of family conflict if your family members are unaware as to why you did what you did. Placing a statement in your will or trust that tells them the reason for your disproportionate distribution can avoid ill feelings between siblings toward you, even though you are gone.

Taking the time to be clear and concise can help ensure the accuracy of your wishes and avoid family conflict. If you have any questions regarding your estate plan, please contact Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. toll-free at (855) 376-5291 or email him at Please ask us about our video conferencing or telephone consultations if you are unable to come to our office.

By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold Township, Monmouth County, NJ Estate Planning Attorney

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