If one of your family members in Texas isn’t satisfied with their inheritance, they might contest your will after your death. You won’t have to deal with it, but your loved ones will, and it could be months before they finally receive the assets you bequeathed. For this reason, it’s important to prevent disputes as much as possible.
How can you prevent inheritance disputes?
Ultimately, you can divide up your estate however you want. You’re not obligated to divide your assets equally among your children or leave part of your estate to a relative you don’t like. However, dividing up your assets equally is one of the best ways to avoid probate litigation. If your relatives feel like you treated them all equally, they’ll be less likely to contest your will.
When you select an executor for your will, you might be tempted to choose a child or a trusted family member. However, other relatives could contest your will by arguing that the executor has a conflict of interest. To prevent in-fighting among your relatives, it’s recommended that you hire a neutral third party to execute your will like an estate planning attorney.
Depending on your circumstances, you might consider leaving your family out of your will altogether. If you suspect that leaving your children a large inheritance will lead to fighting and misused funds, you might want to leave your estate to your favorite charity instead. Your children could still contest the will, but at least they can’t argue that you favored one child over another.
How may an attorney help you?
When you start writing your will, talk to an attorney about your concerns with potential inheritance disputes. Your attorney may suggest ways that you could avoid will contests and make sure that everyone is happy with the inheritance that you leave them.