Fighting with relatives after the death of a loved one is not something you want to happen. Unfortunately, it is a realistic reality for many families in Colorado already struggling to deal with the aftermath of losing a loved one.
Arguments over estate administration and inheritance can damage your relationship with your relatives. Families, especially aging parents, may worry about their children fighting over their estate once they are gone. You may not be able to prevent all arguments, but you can take steps now to prevent disputes from happening after you pass away.
Review and update your will
One of the best ways to prevent disputes over inheritance and your estate is to have a well-crafted will and estate plan. This includes regularly updating your will to address any changes in the family, your assets and wishes for what you want to happen to your possessions.
A clearly written will and other estate documents can make sure everyone knows your wishes and can reduce fighting in the future. If you have many children and grandchildren or have had multiple spouses, it is important to clearly state your wishes for inheritance so there is no confusion among your family about how you want your estate distributed among your loved ones.
Prevent challenges to your will
You can take steps to prevent challenges to your inheritance and will by making it clear who should receive inheritance and who should not. If you choose, you can specifically mention individuals who are excluded from your inheritance in your will. This can make it more difficult for those individuals to challenge your inheritance since you clearly stated your intentions in your will. Just as important, you should include any individuals you want to receive inheritance and make updates as necessary to ensure no one is left out.
It can be helpful to tell a few relatives or family members about your wishes so your will is not a complete surprise, especially if you think certain individuals will try to dispute your will. Planning for the future with a well-crafted will that takes steps to minimize disputes can protect your wishes and make life easier for your loved ones after you are gone.