When you’re creating your estate plan, you may have an heir that you don’t really feel comfortable leaving large amounts of financial assets to. Perhaps they have had problems with drugs, alcohol or gambling addictions in the past. Maybe you’re just afraid that they are not mature enough to spend the money wisely.
No matter the specific reason, your gut instinct is that you should disinherit them. You want to cut them out of the estate plan entirely, even though they would normally expect to inherit something so that you can give your money to people who will use it in a wise fashion. Should you do it?
You may have other options
You can certainly disinherit some if you’d like to. The best way to do this is simply to include a clause stating that you are intentionally disinheriting them and you don’t want them to get any of your assets. You don’t have to say why, but this clause can help to prevent estate disputes.
That said, there are often options you can utilize to protect your money without offending someone by removing them from your estate plan entirely. For example, you could create a spendthrift trust that puts another trustee in charge of that person’s money. The trustee has to okay all of the purchases. This way, you still give the money to your heir – through the trust – and they get to use it, but someone else is in charge of exactly how they use it.
In a complicated situation like this, you can see why it’s so important to understand all of the options you have.