Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog

Editor: Gerry W. Beyer
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Saturday, November 25, 2023

How inheritance data secretly explains U.S. inequality

MoneyMany Americans are unlikely to receive an inheritance, with only 1 in 5 households receiving one in 2022, according to the Federal Reserve's Survey of Consumer Finances. Inheritances primarily come from parents (73%), grandparents (14%), and aunts/uncles (8%), with windfalls often including homes and other real estate.

However, since 1992, parental inheritances have nearly doubled, peaking in one's 50s. A racial gap exists, with white individuals three times more likely to inherit than their Black, Hispanic, or Asian counterparts, contributing to substantial wealth disparities.

For more information see  Andrew Van Dam “How inheritance data secretly explains U.S. inequality”, The Washington Post, November 10, 2023.

Special thanks to Lewis Saret (Attorney, Washington, D.C.) for bringing this article to my attention. 


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