You may have heard someone say that the best way to avoid an estate dispute is to make a plan, and this is true. Many disputes between heirs happen when there is no plan at all. This puts the pressure on the heirs to make all of the decisions, and they may not see eye-to-eye about what their parents would have wanted. They may feel that the decisions being made are unfair, and it’s not in their favor.
But just making a plan is not necessarily enough. It needs to be done properly so that it is clear and easy to understand. If it’s too confusing, that can lead to disputes, as well.
What you want is a plan that requires no interpretation. Don’t leave anything up to your heirs. Carefully and specifically tell them who gets exactly which items. You want the plan to be more like a set of directions than anything else. They don’t have to think about it too hard. They just have to follow those instructions, and the way will be clear to them.
This can be hard to do. If you do feel like the process is confusing, you’re not alone. About 75% of Americans made the same statement when they were surveyed. It’s clear that most people find it a bit intimidating, and this is part of the reason that so many people have neglected to do their estate planning at all.
Help for those confused by estate planning
For this reason, it may be wise to work with an experienced attorney who has been doing estate planning for years. They understand the ins and outs of the process, and they can set up a plan that does exactly what your family needs it to do.