While wills are a beneficial way of leaving property to your children and family, they can also be very contentious matters. Things can be especially difficult when you are leaving property to adult children. If you are changing a will to adjust what you leave to your children, you should use planning and forethought because one or more children could contest your will.
You are not legally obligated to leave your assets to your adult children or anyone else. You must consider who you leave assets to and how much are all critical parts of your estate plan. An experienced attorney can help you put your estate plan into place.
Your estate plan is how you leave assets to loved ones. Generally, you would choose a trust, a will, or a combination of both. When it comes to leaving property to your children, you have the following options:
- You can give your children some money now to help them and see them enjoy it while you are still living.
- You could provide them with a lump sum distribution to protect your money and help your children now.
- If you do not want your children to have all your money at once, you could leave it to them in installments based on certain occurrences or at specific intervals.
- You could establish several types of trusts to manage and protect the assets without giving them to your children.
A will is a binding legal document that expresses your wishes for how your assets would be divided. You would designate certain people as beneficiaries to receive your property. In most cases, your children will be your beneficiaries.
How to Make Amendments to a Will
Once your will has been signed, it is considered to be in effect. There are times when you may wish to change your will to account for adult children and changed circumstances. For example, you may want to change the allocation of your property between certain children or loved ones. You need to change your will to reflect your new wishes. You do not need an entirely new will. Instead, you would execute a document called a codicil. This document would direct specific changes to your will. It must be signed and notarized, like any binding legal document.
Exercise Caution When Reducing a Child’s Share or Disinheriting Them
There are times when you may need to disinherit a child. In effect, you are removing them from your will. An adult child may legally challenge the will when they learn they have been disinherited. If you are trying to amend your will to remove a beneficiary, consult an attorney beforehand. An attorney can assist you with the procedure.
Contact Our Virginia Beach Estate Attorneys at Anchor Legal Group, PLLC for Help With Your Will
Contact our Virginia Beach estate attorneys at Anchor Legal Group, PLLC for any estate planning questions. Call us today at 757-LAW-0000 or contact us online to schedule a consultation. Located in Virginia Beach, we serve clients in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Portsmouth, Newport News, Hampton, Williamsburg, and Eastern Shore, Virginia.