Watch Our Nursing Home Masterclass

Can You Keep Your Children from Inheriting Your Money?

Can You Keep Your Children from Inheriting Your Money?
Please Share!
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Email
I’ve decided I no longer want to leave my estate to my children. They are ungrateful brats. How can I set things up to give my money to charity when I die?

What if you want to exclude your children and give your assets to a charity or a college after you pass away? You also don’t want your children to contest your will.

Nj.com’s article entitled “My kids are brats. I don’t want them to inherit. What’s next?” explains that a person with this intention has several options for their estate.

First, you should understand that, unless there is a pre-existing contractual agreement or other obligation to do so, a person typically isn’t required to leave anyone other than their spouse anything in their estate.

A properly drafted will by an experienced estate planning attorney allows a person to name the beneficiaries of their estate. Beneficiaries can include charities. It also provides the amount of specific items and how each beneficiary will inherit them.

You really can’t do much to prevent a child from challenging a will. However, your estate planning attorney can take steps to mitigate the risk that a challenge may be successful. These steps can include ensuring the testator — the person who establishes a will — has the requisite capacity to sign a will (“being of sound mind”) and that they’re signing it free of any undue influence or coercion.

An experienced estate planning attorney will usually meet with a client several times to discuss the client’s intention of disinheriting a child. The attorney will take notes that may be offered as evidence in the event of a will contest and even conduct the meeting in the presence of another attorney or staff member of the firm who could act as another witness.

A will should include specific language that the testator intends to disinherit a person and that this individual should be treated as predeceasing the testator for purposes of the will. This designation helps ensure that the disinherited individual doesn’t somehow benefit.

Note that not all assets pass through the estate and according to the terms of a will. Assets like retirement accounts, life insurance, annuities, and other financial accounts pass by beneficiary designation.

Real estate usually passes by operation of law, such as joint tenancy with right of survivorship or Transfer on Death Deeds.

Reference: nj.com (Dec. 22, 2021) “My kids are brats. I don’t want them to inherit. What’s next?”