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Old 10-22-2016, 07:44 AM   #41
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My wife's maternal grandfather cut out his son from his will, leaving his modest estate to his 3 daughters. My wife found this out while doing her family history and on asking her mother what they did got the reply, "Oh, we ignored that and divided it equally".

Things are always much easier when siblings get along well with one another.
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:19 AM   #42
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What do you do if both your kids are married, but one has a spouse that you don't like. Would you cut that spouse out if your child pre-deceased the disliked spouse?
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:25 AM   #43
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I have 2 children. One child has never been married and has no children. He never wanted children. My other child is married and has 3 children. My grandchildren have given me great joy. I would like to include my grandchildren in our will, but I am unsure how to do it. I don't think that it is fair to give my son less, because he chose not to have children. However, should I give my daughter less, when she chose to have children? What would you suggest?
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:44 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Dreamer View Post
I have 2 children. One child has never been married and has no children. He never wanted children. My other child is married and has 3 children. My grandchildren have given me great joy. I would like to include my grandchildren in our will, but I am unsure how to do it. I don't think that it is fair to give my son less, because he chose not to have children. However, should I give my daughter less, when she chose to have children? What would you suggest?
I have the same situation. One son has 2 children, the other has none. I divide everything equally for the 2 sons. However, I set up 529s for both my grandsons.
Also, I am splitting my RMD every year among my 2 sons and my wife's 2 sons. My late mom always said to give it to them while you are alive so they can thank you.
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:47 AM   #45
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I'm in the camp that says the parents should be the only ones who decide how to split. Comments about kids being involved in the "negotiations" make me cringe.

My parents split a small estate evenly among seven kids. Four of us didn't need the money. There was no re-distribution. The three who weren't in good financial shape didn't use the money wisely and have gone on to make more bad financial choices. More money would have gone down the drain.

The non-monetary items (photos, mementos, keepsakes, etc.) were also divided as evenly as possible. Distribution of some items was per a document they left, and some had little notes left on/in them. We all got together and divvied up the rest. Everyone was happy, which was lucky because as in any large family there has sometimes been bickering and drama.

Our two kids will each get half, barring a medical issue for one that equires long term care. It is still too early to tell, but one will probably earn much less than the other, but for both it will be a life-changing amount of money when the times comes.

Just a note on your comment about pictures.... you can have copies made for the other children... my mom put together photo albums years ago and chose some pics of all or most of the kids for all albums... she had copies made...
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:51 AM   #46
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I have 2 children. One child has never been married and has no children. He never wanted children. My other child is married and has 3 children. My grandchildren have given me great joy. I would like to include my grandchildren in our will, but I am unsure how to do it. I don't think that it is fair to give my son less, because he chose not to have children. However, should I give my daughter less, when she chose to have children? What would you suggest?

It is really up to you... what do YOU want to happen...

I am sure if 100 people gave an answer you would have 100 answers..

As Souschef has suggested, you can set up something for their education and then leave the rest to your two kids...


BUT, you want to make sure that if son with kids dies before you that his inheritance goes to your grand kids.... it is not automatic.... if there is no language in the will and one beneficiary dies before you do... then it is as they never existed.... so in your case the whole estate would go to son with no kids....
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Old 10-22-2016, 08:55 AM   #47
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I have my boyfriend on my ROTH but talked him into making my nephew his heir so if I died and then him my family would get all the money back he didn't spend. He doesn't have family and I didn't want to leave him so much it went to the state.
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Old 10-22-2016, 09:25 AM   #48
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A a lot depends on the relationship among the siblings. The only thing from my parents estate they did not want divided evenly was their house. When they were alive both Dad and Mom had stated that, if we were to sell their house, each daughter (3) would get 20% of the net proceeds, and each son (4) would be 10%. Their feelings were that the daughters would be in more danger of financial risk than their sons.

We are fine with this - in all honesty I never considered getting ANYTHING from my parents from an financial perspective, since I had done so much better than they had. There were also other unexpected monies each left when they died (Dad about 22 years ago, Mom 2 years ago) that were divided evenly (one tier for their kids, a second tier for their grandkids).

The biggest "disagreement" we had was one brother asking if we should give the sister who took on the majority of additional care for our mother in her last years a larger share of any house proceeds. Eventually we agreed to keep things as our parents wanted it (and that sister later said she would have refused any change since for her that time with mom was such a blessing).
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Old 10-22-2016, 09:33 AM   #49
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I have the same situation. One son has 2 children, the other has none. I divide everything equally for the 2 sons. However, I set up 529s for both my grandsons.
Also, I am splitting my RMD every year among my 2 sons and my wife's 2 sons. My late mom always said to give it to them while you are alive so they can thank you.

I am leaning toward dividing between my 2 children also. I have set up 529s for my 2 granddaughters, but need to get busy starting one for my grandson that was born 5/31/16. We have not reached the age for RMDs yet, but I like your suggestions. Thanks.
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Old 10-22-2016, 09:37 AM   #50
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BUT, you want to make sure that if son with kids dies before you that his inheritance goes to your grand kids.... it is not automatic.... if there is no language in the will and one beneficiary dies before you do... then it is as they never existed.... so in your case the whole estate would go to son with no kids....

I did not know this. We were in our early 20's when our will was made. We did not have any children then, lived in a different state and several people named in our will are deceased now. We really need to get our will updated! Thanks.
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Old 10-22-2016, 09:45 AM   #51
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I am executrix for my parents, so they have filled me in on the generalities of their wills.

I have one brother, we each have two children. My brother has proven to be a poor money manager and my parents have had to help his family at various times over the last twenty five years. My parents don't want to leave him a windfall because he's likely to blow it all. DH and I have done well, and don't really need an inheritance.

My parents have decided to split things evenly six ways, among their two children and four grandchildren. They wanted to make sure the grandkids, my brother's kids especially, would benefit. But they were afraid of a legal fight or bad feelings if they skipped over my brother. By making a six-way split, they hope to avoid issues while getting the inheritance to the people who will benefit most.
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Old 10-22-2016, 02:18 PM   #52
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I believe the person writing the will should be able to divide their assets however they want.
Yes, this. It's their money, they get to decide.

This is a timely topic as DW just this week received a check for an inheritance from the estate of a great-aunt who passed away almost two years ago. Unfortunately the attorney who administered the estate had a series of health issues that delayed things considerably. The final paperwork showed that the estate started with just under half a million, and one of the things the great-aunt did was divide most of it to her family, including many nephews and nieces, and their descendants if they passed first. She also gave a six-figure amount to two churches.

We all knew the great-aunt was well off but of course no one knew any amounts, and she'd had 24-hour in-home care for her dementia for several years so that could deplete the amount considerably. Like most of the family we were surprised to learn that DW was to be one of the heirs.

Speculation then ran rampant among some family members. We took the position that if DW received anything it might be enough to take us out to dinner and let it go at that, given that the estate was to be divided among 20-some people.

So, earlier this week DW received a check drawn on the estate account for the princely sum of...

$3,500. Not exactly life-changing but better than a poke in the eye.

We are pretty sure that at least one family member is seething over the donations to the churches as she had been the most vocal about what she was going to do with varying speculative amounts.

As for the $3,500, at the moment we haven't the foggiest idea of what she's going to do with it. For now it's in a new savings account in the local brick 'n mortar bank because that's what DW wanted to do.
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Old 10-23-2016, 07:50 AM   #53
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There is no "one size fits all" scenario. As some others have said, things change, sometimes significantly. Recently, my In-laws passed within 2 years of each other.

Sister 1 lives an 8 hour drive away, saw her mother 1 time in the last 4 years, and never saw her father again after coming for 1/2 a day for the mother's funeral. Equal share? I think not.

Sister 2 lives within 1 mile of DW, had a falling out with their father about having her name on his accounts (he just wanted 1 name, not everyones), and did not talk to him ever again from about 2-3 weeks after the mother's death. Equal share? I think not.

DW has cared for her father for the last year and half, to the level of having to change diapers while bedridden for the last 3 months, and leaving her $65k/year job which LUCKILY, she is able to return to. There were previous posts about LTC, which I won't rehash but suffice to say not an option. We also paid funeral expenses for the father. Sister 1 never even came to his funeral. Sister 2 had to sign to open crypt according to Funeral Home requirements, and her only question was "does this obligate me for any costs".

Now, that all said, these folks (in-laws) were not well off. That is to say, we expended most cash keeping his house up (roof leaked causing damage so new roof and repairs, A/C, etc). Their only asset is their paid off home with a value of approx $180k. This home was for some reason put into an Irrevocable Trust 10 years ago, with a specific distribution that is pretty much "equal". I can tell you that the father would have changed that to favor DW if he had the option, but since Irrevocable, not possible.

People may say this is the exception, not the rule, but from the people i have heard from both at work and in personal life, I think some form of this is more the rule than exception.

I can only imagine what kind of headache we would have with DW's sisters if her father were not a retired USPS worker, and her mother a never have worked SAHM.
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Old 10-23-2016, 08:23 AM   #54
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I was thinking that beneficiary designations for investment accounts and insurance policies would be a means to adjust distributions in a way that all heirs would not be provided with details of who got what.

Is the investment/insurance company required to disclose what percentage of the asset the beneficiary is receiving?
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Old 10-23-2016, 01:06 PM   #55
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I have my boyfriend on my ROTH but talked him into making my nephew his heir so if I died and then him my family would get all the money back he didn't spend. He doesn't have family and I didn't want to leave him so much it went to the state.


That is great as long as he goes through with it.... however, you will never know...

As I have stated before, there always is the blond bimbo problem... (you can change it to any description you want, but this was what I was told way back when)... so you die, boyfriend gets your money.... and when he is old and frail a blonde bimbo comes along to show him what he was missing.... and also gets the will changed for everything to go to her.... there is no way to prevent this if you give outright... I do not know enough to know if you can put a contingency on a ROTH, but I highly doubt you can....
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Old 10-23-2016, 02:43 PM   #56
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If one of my sons died I would not leave it to a spouse. They can inherit from their own parents. If there were grandchildren I would leave that son's share to his kids.
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Old 10-23-2016, 03:24 PM   #57
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What do you do if both your kids are married, but one has a spouse that you don't like. Would you cut that spouse out if your child pre-deceased the disliked spouse?
You could leave the money in a trust for the grandchildren with income to your kids during their lifetime.
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Old 10-23-2016, 03:28 PM   #58
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I have 2 children. One child has never been married and has no children. He never wanted children. My other child is married and has 3 children. My grandchildren have given me great joy. I would like to include my grandchildren in our will, but I am unsure how to do it. I don't think that it is fair to give my son less, because he chose not to have children. However, should I give my daughter less, when she chose to have children? What would you suggest?
This is where a trust with income to your children and the rest to the grandchildren when both sons have passed solves the problem. Once again any competent lawyer could handle this very easily. (of course you would need to run everything thru the probate process or perhaps the lawyer could show you how to structure beneficiaries to accomplish this)
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Old 10-23-2016, 03:33 PM   #59
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It is really up to you... what do YOU want to happen...

I am sure if 100 people gave an answer you would have 100 answers..

As Souschef has suggested, you can set up something for their education and then leave the rest to your two kids...


BUT, you want to make sure that if son with kids dies before you that his inheritance goes to your grand kids.... it is not automatic.... if there is no language in the will and one beneficiary dies before you do... then it is as they never existed.... so in your case the whole estate would go to son with no kids....
Actually I believe in the case of no will the late sons share would go to any descendants he might have. The law in general provides that if an heir had descendants then if the heir died the inheritance goes to the heir's descendants. The percentages involve differ in general if all the inheritors are of the same generator or of different generations.

If there is a will then the will should include such language if desired.
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Old 10-23-2016, 03:42 PM   #60
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Reading these posts makes me very happy we only have one heir.
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