Saturday, September 19, 2020
When creating an estate plan, allocating and dividing your assets can be very difficult. You are more than likely trying to figure out how to allocate your possessions in a way that will not create tension between your family members after you are gone. When creating your estate plan, it is very important that you make your intentions clear and have your estate planning strategy in line with those intentions.
Although possession that can be turned into cash are easy to divide, tangible things like jewelry and heirlooms will not be as easy to divvy up. You may also have items that hold sentimental value that multiple family members are hoping to get their hands on. The family fights are likely to be centered around these types of objects.
It will likely be a tough decision, but whoever you decide to give these items to, you should make it very clear who you choose and why you have chosen them.
Below are a few steps to help you along the way:
- List the most important or valuable items in your will
- Direct that certain items be sold
- Write a memorandum
- Give everything away now
- Get an appraisal
- Use a letter
If you make these decisions instead of leaving them in the hands of your family, the process will be much smoother.
See Randy M. Lish, How to Divide Up Personal Possessions Without Dividing the Family, Elder Law News, September 18, 2020.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (Professional Legal Marketing (PLM, Inc.)) for bringing this article to my attention.