While most people in Van Horn would like to think that families can get through anything together and that nothing can tear them apart, sometimes that just isn’t so. There are just some Texas families in which it is pretty clear that parents and children don’t get along, and sometimes parents want to make it explicitly clear that they don’t want a child to inherit anything. Just like any kind of specific request, the only way to truly ensure only certain heirs will receive property is through a thoughtful estate plan.
Before a parent chooses to disinherit an heir, however, it is important to look at the reasons why. There are many parents who don’t really want to disinherit a child, but they are so concerned that if the child were to inherit anything it would just go to his or her drug or alcohol habit. In a sense, the parent is trying to prevent harm to the child that would come with added income.
If this is the case, maybe disinheriting a child is not the best thing to do. Instead, the parent can set up a trust that has one important clause: the child must go to treatment and get clean before he or she receives any money. Not only would this prevent the child from harming him- or herself through, but would serve as an important incentive for the child to clean up his or her act.
There are many different reasons why a Van Horn parent may wish to disinherit a child, but regardless of the reason, it is wise for him or her to speak with an attorney to create an estate plan. By creating a narrowly tailored estate plan, someone can generally block anyone from inheriting that he or she wants.
Source:Bloomberg, “You Want to Cut Your Kid Out of Your Will. Or Do You?,” Lewis Braham, July 23, 2013