If you are planning your estate, there are certain priorities that you probably have. The first may be to ensure that your loved ones and the causes you care about will benefit from your legacy at the end of your lifetime. Additionally, you'll want to try and minimize the taxes and other fees that your estate will pay so that your beneficiaries can gain as much as possible. Finally, you probably want to prevent any possible disputes over your estate.
When you experience the loss of a loved one, the grief can be indescribable. It's likely that your view of the world will change, and you may not recognize yourself for some time. While it's possible to regain your sense of self and come through the grief process a stronger person, it's also possible that tensions may arise between you and the people you love.
When a person passes away and leaves behind a will, the contents of the will might not be what family members expected or hoped for. Many people, unfortunately, become involved in disputes with other loved ones after a family member passes away because they are so upset with the directives in the will.
Many estate disputes happen simply because parents do not plan ahead and siblings do not know what their parents wanted. They're left to figure it out on their own. Naturally, they're going to disagree on some fairly big decisions -- maybe one wants to keep the family cabin, for instance, while another wants to sell.
When siblings do not get as much money in their parents' estate plan as they wanted, they sometimes get caught up in estate disputes. The bequests may be inequal, for instance, leaving one child more than the other. That child who got less will then take their brother or sister to court for the money they want.
Undue influence can be something of a tricky subject in estate disputes because there is no specific definition. Also, it can look a bit different from one case to the next. But undue influence is the process of inducing an elderly person to change their will or estate plan. But what does it look like?
The months after the passing of a loved one can be an emotional time full of stress, grief and sadness. Many estate disputes arise during this period, and often people act in an emotionally charged way. Sadly, rifts between family members can easily be created.
If you have recently lost a loved one, you will know that emotions can become tense during the grieving period. As well as going through the emotional process of grieving, it is possible that you will also have to deal with the emotional aspects of the bereavement.
When Aretha Franklin passed away last August, it appeared that she had no estate plan -- despite the fact that she had significant assets, including her music catalog and memorabilia, which are likely worth millions of dollars. She is survived by four sons as well as grandchildren and other family members.
If a member of your family has passed away in recent months, you will have needed to work with other family members in order to carry out the wishes that your loved one stated in their will. It is quite common for family members to be shocked and upset by the wishes that are put forward in a loved one's will. This sense of shock and disbelief can morph into blame toward other family members, and this is often how disputes arise.