Author Topic: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.  (Read 789637 times)

mm1970

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1600 on: May 14, 2019, 02:02:55 PM »
Bumping this thread.

Elderly relative, widowed a decade-plus ago, marries elderly widow he met in grief counseling. Both are well-off financially, though her more so than him. After the wedding, she moves into his home, sells her big fancy house and distributes the sale proceeds to her grown children. The couple set up their money in a his/hers/theirs arrangement, complete with wills and possibly trusts. He dies, leaving his cash and ultimately the house (which his wife will continue to reside in until her death, per their arrangement) to his grown children. Now her kids are suing for a portion of his estate, claiming they're entitled to a share of it because the couple was married for ten years. While they may have the legal right, some of us are gobsmacked because they had already taken a decent amount of money from their mother years ago and were already quite wealthy. Now they want more.


Actually they do NOT have the legal right. Hopefully an attorney will explain this to them to avoid this nonsense. They were adult children. There is no evidence her children were adopted by her late husband. IF there was no will (and there was a will) it would go to his wife, then biological children. Stepchildren have no natural rights to inheritance. Sometimes I hate people.


Yeah, I don't get it. They're apparently claiming there's a state law that allows this. During the past couple of years, several of the adult children used their mom's funds and/or their own (don't know which) to pay for in-home care for her; perhaps they presume they're entitled to some of his money because he benefited indirectly from an aide administering her meds and doing some housekeeping? If that's their rationale, they should've held onto the money she gifted them when she remarried, which might have been as much as high five to low six figures apiece: it was a damn big house. They could have stopped to consider how much more time and money they might be spending on her care if she hadn't had a new husband to provide a home and companionship for many years.

This is the pits for his kids, all of whom are working or middle class, at or near retirement themselves, and could put to good use whatever their dad left them. Instead, I'm sure the lawyers' fees are going to be eating up a chunk of whatever money there is.

I have no financial stake in this. It just makes me sad to see what greed can do to people, even (especially?) those who are upper-middle class or rich.
Gosh this is worse than my story that started up on page 1 or 2!

Finances_With_Purpose

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1601 on: May 25, 2019, 04:53:28 PM »
These stories are just sad...

I received a small inheritance recently (and unexpectedly).  But alas for you all: it was the utter opposite of dramatic.  The executor did everything 110% by the book and the inheritors all tripped over themselves making sure everyone else was OK with everything that was done.  And everything worked out as it was supposed to.  It reminded me how fortunate I am. 

SwordGuy

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1602 on: May 25, 2019, 06:19:28 PM »
These stories are just sad...

I received a small inheritance recently (and unexpectedly).  But alas for you all: it was the utter opposite of dramatic.  The executor did everything 110% by the book and the inheritors all tripped over themselves making sure everyone else was OK with everything that was done.  And everything worked out as it was supposed to.  It reminded me how fortunate I am.

@Finances_With_Purpose ,
Yeah you , your living relatives, and those who raised them right!

TVRodriguez

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1603 on: June 10, 2019, 04:24:28 PM »
Maybe there is more to the story, like they paid for a lot of renovations to make it wheelchair accessible, for mom and had an agreement to be repaid, and now just want it back. 

Totally correct that non-dependent step children have zero inheritance rights.  DH was adopted by his stepdad, (first dad died when he was 2) so ended up out of the will of his grandfather whom he had a life-long close relationship with....   No one realized that "all my grandchildren" would exclude a grandson that was adopted by someone else.

That's a shame.  Most of the estate plans I draft include a clause allowing someone in your husband's situation to inherit from his original grandparents.

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1604 on: June 10, 2019, 07:43:07 PM »
Before my grandmother died a couple of years ago, my aunt had power of attorney.

My mother only told me last night that two of my cousins hit up my aunt (their mother) to "dip into" my grandmother's estate (which was funding her aged care) for them.

Thank god my aunt had the balls to tell them where to go.

Gail2000

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1605 on: June 11, 2019, 01:36:19 AM »
Before my grandmother died a couple of years ago, my aunt had power of attorney.

My mother only told me last night that two of my cousins hit up my aunt (their mother) to "dip into" my grandmother's estate (which was funding her aged care) for them.

Thank god my aunt had the balls to tell them where to go.


Thank goodness for stories like this to restore faith in humanity.

SwordGuy

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1606 on: June 11, 2019, 08:33:16 AM »
Before my grandmother died a couple of years ago, my aunt had power of attorney.

My mother only told me last night that two of my cousins hit up my aunt (their mother) to "dip into" my grandmother's estate (which was funding her aged care) for them.

Thank god my aunt had the balls to tell them where to go.


Thank goodness for stories like this to restore faith in one out of three members of humanity.

Fixed that for you...

SheWhoWalksAtLunch

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1607 on: June 11, 2019, 02:22:05 PM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

The very entitled, only boy in the group, insisted that it wasn't fair he would inherit less than my sister and I would.  He held up the distribution, threatened to sue and was generally an expensive pain in the process. 

Eventually I lost it during a whole family (both sides) meeting with the lawyers my grandparents had very sensibly assigned as executors.  I very loudly (ok, I was shouting) said that our parents and grandparents were all dead. If my sister was dead too I'd get 50%.  My sister is well worth 25% to me.

The three cousins had lost a fourth sibling.  If that cousin was still alive they'd all be receiving 12.5% each.  Would they give 4.1% of the total to have that cousin back?  If the boy cousin wants 25% so badly, which of his living sisters was he willing to bump off to get the 8.4% difference?

There was a long awkward silence. 

The lawyers contacted everyone a few days later to let us know the challenge to the will had been rescinded. I've remained friendly with the two girl cousins, but it was years before the boy cousin spoke to me again.

Dicey

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1608 on: June 11, 2019, 02:26:33 PM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

The very entitled, only boy in the group, insisted that it wasn't fair he would inherit less than my sister and I would.  He held up the distribution, threatened to sue and was generally an expensive pain in the process. 

Eventually I lost it during a whole family (both sides) meeting with the lawyers my grandparents had very sensibly assigned as executors.  I very loudly (ok, I was shouting) said that our parents and grandparents were all dead. If my sister was dead too I'd get 50%.  My sister is well worth 25% to me.

The three cousins had lost a fourth sibling.  If that cousin was still alive they'd all be receiving 12.5% each.  Would they give 4.1% of the total to have that cousin back?  If the boy cousin wants 25% so badly, which of his living sisters was he willing to bump off to get the 8.4% difference?

There was a long awkward silence. 

The lawyers contacted everyone a few days later to let us know the challenge to the will had been rescinded. I've remained friendly with the two girl cousins, but it was years before the boy cousin spoke to me again.
You are a total badass! Sorry it came to this, but hooray for you for standing your ground.

Dragonswan

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1609 on: June 12, 2019, 09:23:36 AM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

The very entitled, only boy in the group, insisted that it wasn't fair he would inherit less than my sister and I would.  He held up the distribution, threatened to sue and was generally an expensive pain in the process. 

Eventually I lost it during a whole family (both sides) meeting with the lawyers my grandparents had very sensibly assigned as executors.  I very loudly (ok, I was shouting) said that our parents and grandparents were all dead. If my sister was dead too I'd get 50%.  My sister is well worth 25% to me.

The three cousins had lost a fourth sibling.  If that cousin was still alive they'd all be receiving 12.5% each.  Would they give 4.1% of the total to have that cousin back?  If the boy cousin wants 25% so badly, which of his living sisters was he willing to bump off to get the 8.4% difference?

There was a long awkward silence. 

The lawyers contacted everyone a few days later to let us know the challenge to the will had been rescinded. I've remained friendly with the two girl cousins, but it was years before the boy cousin spoke to me again.
That is one outstanding way to say STFU.  Well done.

K-ice

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1610 on: June 12, 2019, 11:37:11 AM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

....


I do wonder about the fairness of these next generation distributions.  But if the Grandparents were really worried about it they would split it 20% to each Grandchild.  Didn't all the cousins know how things would be split before the grandparents passed?
« Last Edit: June 12, 2019, 11:45:13 AM by K-ice »

sherr

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1611 on: June 12, 2019, 11:54:13 AM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

I do wonder about the fairness of these next generation distributions.  But if the Grandparents were really worried about it they would split it 20% to each Grandchild.  Didn't all the cousins know how things would be split before the grandparents passed?

It's exactly the same as it would have been in the normal course of things if the parents had still been alive. Normally Grandparent's inheritance would have been split equally among the parents (50% each), and then when parents died their inheritance would be equally split amongst their children (50/2% each to the two siblings, 50/3% each to the three siblings).

SwordGuy

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1612 on: June 12, 2019, 11:54:54 AM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

....


I do wonder about the fairness of these next generation distributions.  But if the Grandparents were really worried about it they would split it 20% to each Grandchild.  Didn't all the cousins know how things would be split before the grandparents passed?

First of all, @SheWhoWalksAtLunch , that was awesome!    Well done!

Second, "Fair"?    Fair doesn't apply.   It's was the grandparent's money, no one but them had any claim to it.   If they wanted to set up a trust for their cats that would have been their right to do so.

But if we wanted to talk fair, they gave each of their kids the same amount of money.  That's fair.
If their kids wanted to have a different number of kids, that's the kid's business, not the grandparents.

The grandkids have advantages and disadvantages from having more or fewer siblings.   This particular distribution falls into the disadvantage category for those with more siblings.   Having more siblings to help you out when things go wrong in life is an advantage.   Perhaps you could view the larger amount to those with fewer siblings as compensation for that... :)

talltexan

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1613 on: June 12, 2019, 11:55:27 AM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.

BabyShark

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1614 on: June 12, 2019, 12:05:06 PM »
It's also an argument for keeping your will updated as life events happen.  It's possible that the will was never updated when the children died so state law kicked in and said per stirpes for the grandkids rather than per capita.  The will can circumvent that but it has to be written in. 

Either way, @SheWhoWalksAtLunch, you're my hero for that.

merula

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1615 on: June 12, 2019, 12:20:38 PM »
When my great-grandma died, she had been predeceased by one child and one grandchild, while leaving others in each of those generations living. (Three children, call them 1, 2 and 3. 1 had children 1A, 1B, 1C and 1D. 1D was the predeceased one, who left 1Di and 1Dii.)

Per stipes was therefore the only way to distribute with impacting the original "one third to each child" principle.

2 and 3 each got 1/3. 1A, 1B and 1C each got 1/12. 1Di and 1Dii each got 1/24.

Me? I'm 1Bi. I got nothing, but I have my mom, which neither she, her siblings nor niece/nephew can say.

K-ice

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1616 on: June 12, 2019, 01:34:04 PM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.

Ooohh. I get to google some Latin

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_stirpes

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primogeniture

"Primogeniture (English: /praɪməˈdʒɛnɪtʃər/) is the right, by law or custom, of the firstborn legitimate son to inherit his parent's entire or main estate."

Primogeniture is your preference? Really?  I can see making the oldest child the executor (if they were responsible) but giving them everything?  The way you said "put them in charge" is OK with me but it is hard to trust anyone would split things fairly.


Per capita sounds like a good idea to me.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_capita

I don't consider myself any more or less deserving than any of my cousins. 

My one grandparent clearly listed and named their grandchildren who then all received the same generous gift. In that list even non-blood descendants were named to make things clear. 

However, a gift is a bit different than a % of the remaining estate.

Has anyone ever seen gifts of a certain amount upto a certain percentage?   I have heard of cases where the gifts were so generous that there was almost nothing left for the heirs.




DadJokes

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1617 on: June 12, 2019, 01:54:52 PM »
First of all, @SheWhoWalksAtLunch , that was awesome!    Well done!

Second, "Fair"?    Fair doesn't apply.   It's was the grandparent's money, no one but them had any claim to it.   If they wanted to set up a trust for their cats that would have been their right to do so.

But if we wanted to talk fair, they gave each of their kids the same amount of money.  That's fair.
If their kids wanted to have a different number of kids, that's the kid's business, not the grandparents.

The grandkids have advantages and disadvantages from having more or fewer siblings.   This particular distribution falls into the disadvantage category for those with more siblings.   Having more siblings to help you out when things go wrong in life is an advantage.   Perhaps you could view the larger amount to those with fewer siblings as compensation for that... :)

Agreed. Receiving even 1% is usually more than those receiving the inheritance have earned. It's entirely the prerogative of those bequeathing the inheritance to decide what to do with their money. If they chose to give 99% to one grandchild and make the others split the last 1%, they certainly have the right to do so. And I'm sure if they saw that grandson behaving that way, they might have written him out altogether.

geekette

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1618 on: June 12, 2019, 02:07:50 PM »
My DH got a "per stirpes" inheritance a couple years ago, and it was interesting to see how things got divided since it went back pretty far.

DH's grandmother's sister and her husband left their estate in some sort of trust to their one child, who had suffered brain damage at birth. I think this was back in the 70's.  Their son, despite his disability, had a great life in their small town, but when he died in his 80's in 2016, the remaining estate was divvied in two, then that portion was divvied equally between each parent's many siblings (all of whom were long gone by then), then further divided amongst their progeny and so on.  DH ended up with a little over 1% (he didn't expect any). 

talltexan

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1619 on: June 12, 2019, 02:44:21 PM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.

Ooohh. I get to google some Latin

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_stirpes

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primogeniture

"Primogeniture (English: /praɪməˈdʒɛnɪtʃər/) is the right, by law or custom, of the firstborn legitimate son to inherit his parent's entire or main estate."

Primogeniture is your preference? Really?  I can see making the oldest child the executor (if they were responsible) but giving them everything?  The way you said "put them in charge" is OK with me but it is hard to trust anyone would split things fairly.


Per capita sounds like a good idea to me.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_capita

I don't consider myself any more or less deserving than any of my cousins. 

My one grandparent clearly listed and named their grandchildren who then all received the same generous gift. In that list even non-blood descendants were named to make things clear. 

However, a gift is a bit different than a % of the remaining estate.

Has anyone ever seen gifts of a certain amount upto a certain percentage?   I have heard of cases where the gifts were so generous that there was almost nothing left for the heirs.

Disclaimer: I cannot imagine actually doing Primogeniture: the other night, my two kids helped me pick up the play room, and I paid my daughter--who did it with energy and vigor--$1, while my son--who did it with reluctance--received $.50. The latter thought it was so unfair.
 

Sibley

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1620 on: June 12, 2019, 06:58:41 PM »
Second, "Fair"?    Fair doesn't apply.   It's was the grandparent's money, no one but them had any claim to it.   If they wanted to set up a trust for their cats that would have been their right to do so.

Um, I did... I have a trust for my cat if I died. The cat would be quite well taken care of.

Gail2000

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1621 on: June 12, 2019, 07:07:51 PM »
Before my grandmother died a couple of years ago, my aunt had power of attorney.

My mother only told me last night that two of my cousins hit up my aunt (their mother) to "dip into" my grandmother's estate (which was funding her aged care) for them.

Thank god my aunt had the balls to tell them where to go.


Thank goodness for stories like this to restore faith in one out of three members of humanity.

Fixed that for you...


Youíre right when youíre right. Iím not sure what came over me to produce that optimism. It wonít likely happen again.

Gail2000

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1622 on: June 12, 2019, 07:11:41 PM »
Second, "Fair"?    Fair doesn't apply.   It's was the grandparent's money, no one but them had any claim to it.   If they wanted to set up a trust for their cats that would have been their right to do so.

Um, I did... I have a trust for my cat if I died. The cat would be quite well taken care of.

Better then my fellaís grandmother who wanted to be buried with hers. After her passing the family came together and decided this was one wish they would not respect. This is pretty reliving considering they , relieved balloons, sang a Celine  dion song at the funeral and kept ashes in a locket.

ender

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1623 on: June 12, 2019, 09:23:59 PM »
Youíre right when youíre right. Iím not sure what came over me to produce that optimism. It wonít likely happen again.

Guess it depends on how low your expectations are on most folks ;-)

Maybe 1/3 is better than your feeling of society overall  ;-)

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1624 on: June 12, 2019, 09:56:25 PM »
Second, "Fair"?    Fair doesn't apply.   It's was the grandparent's money, no one but them had any claim to it.   If they wanted to set up a trust for their cats that would have been their right to do so.

Um, I did... I have a trust for my cat if I died. The cat would be quite well taken care of.

Better then my fellaís grandmother who wanted to be buried with hers. After her passing the family came together and decided this was one wish they would not respect. This is pretty reliving considering they , relieved balloons, sang a Celine  dion song at the funeral and kept ashes in a locket.

Well, if the cat was alive, I understand that completely. I knew one woman who left orders that her loyal dog be euthanized after she passed away because she didn't trust anyone to give the dog a good home. Her executor had the dog... executed.

shelivesthedream

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1625 on: June 12, 2019, 11:42:32 PM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.

Ooohh. I get to google some Latin

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_stirpes

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primogeniture

"Primogeniture (English: /praɪməˈdʒɛnɪtʃər/) is the right, by law or custom, of the firstborn legitimate son to inherit his parent's entire or main estate."

Primogeniture is your preference? Really?  I can see making the oldest child the executor (if they were responsible) but giving them everything?  The way you said "put them in charge" is OK with me but it is hard to trust anyone would split things fairly.


Per capita sounds like a good idea to me.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Per_capita

I don't consider myself any more or less deserving than any of my cousins. 

My one grandparent clearly listed and named their grandchildren who then all received the same generous gift. In that list even non-blood descendants were named to make things clear. 

However, a gift is a bit different than a % of the remaining estate.

Has anyone ever seen gifts of a certain amount upto a certain percentage?   I have heard of cases where the gifts were so generous that there was almost nothing left for the heirs.

Yup. My grandmother's will say £X each to me and my brother and then the rest divided equally between my childless uncle and my mother. If she dies today we will get about 0.25% each. If she needs long term care, that could end up being the whole estate! My mother tried to dissuade her from naming a fixed sum and go for a percentage instead but she wouldn't.

K-ice

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1626 on: June 13, 2019, 12:07:36 AM »
Disclaimer: I cannot imagine actually doing Primogeniture: the other night, my two kids helped me pick up the play room, and I paid my daughter--who did it with energy and vigor--$1, while my son--who did it with reluctance--received $.50. The latter thought it was so unfair.

Fair enough ;)

Sugaree

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1627 on: June 13, 2019, 04:20:55 AM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

....


I do wonder about the fairness of these next generation distributions.  But if the Grandparents were really worried about it they would split it 20% to each Grandchild.  Didn't all the cousins know how things would be split before the grandparents passed?

I suppose that argument could be made since the grandparents outlived their children.  Maybe.  In a case where at least one child is still alive, I do feel like it should be split equally between the children, regardless of the number of children they have.  What happens if one child decides not to have children?  Are they just cut out?

talltexan

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1628 on: June 13, 2019, 07:43:24 AM »
I know Dave Ramsey gets a lot of hate on this website, but I think he's got the legacy stuff pretty much nailed. Some thoughts:

  • Don't surprise people: while you're still alive, tell that no-good, deadbeat son why you're leaving his share to the humane society
  • Have periodic (he does annual, I doubt most of us have complex businesses we're leaving behind) readings of the will with the family
  • If you get remarried late in life, it's completely reasonable to use pre-nup's, etc., to work out financial arrangements for step-children
  • Approach the wealth we accumulate as something we are looking after to preserve it for the future, a duty to wise management rather than as something you're entitled to drain
  • Finally, if you are an heir, be thinking how to use what you receive to unite the family, not divide it

merula

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1629 on: June 13, 2019, 07:56:40 AM »
Disclaimer: I cannot imagine actually doing Primogeniture: the other night, my two kids helped me pick up the play room, and I paid my daughter--who did it with energy and vigor--$1, while my son--who did it with reluctance--received $.50. The latter thought it was so unfair.

Fair enough ;)

Primogeniture doesn't necessarily mean sons over daughters. Male-preference primogeniture does, but you can retain primogeniture without the male preference. See most continental European monarchies for reference.

BeanCounter

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1630 on: June 13, 2019, 10:26:06 AM »
I've been kind of reading this thread on and off for awhile. I'll tell my story-
I am an only child my, father died when I was 17. His parents were both still living. His parents and his four siblings (and my father when he was living) all ran a large corporate farm. A million or so in crop revenue and a couple million in land and equipment. It's a corporate farm so there is stock etc.
When my father's first parent (my grandfather) died I was called to come see the attorney to sign the paperwork. I was very surprised to find out that after my father died they cut me out of the will completely. And if you know anything about wills you will know that to cut someone out you have to write a paragraph that specifically states what that person WILL NOT get. which was everything. The reason stated was that my uncles persuaded my grandparents to change this because "none of the other grandchildren were getting anything". Nevermind that my cousins will through their parents inherit their portion of the estate. So at some point they will get something, and I got nothing despite the fact that my father was a full contributor to the success of the business when he was alive.
Anyway, I didn't contest anything I let it go. I know my Uncles are just trying to protect their own business interests and I forgive them for that. I'd rather have the family than the money. And I assumed that this was a one off case.
BUT fast forward 20 years, my mother dies last year. She was preceded in death by her mother who had a trust that gives my still living grandfather living rights to the money. My mother was a named beneficiary on the trust and then it's per stirpes. So it goes to me. My mother was getting a 1/3 distribution from the trust every year. 1/3 to her, 1/3 to her brother and 1/3 to her dad (my grandfather). I thought that I would start getting a 1/3 distribution after my mother passed. NOPE. My grandfather didn't like that my cousin wasn't getting any money. So he changed the distribution to be split in fourths- me, my cousin, my uncle, and my grandfather. Because it's my grandmother's trust I will still get half of the principle when he passes (split between my uncle and I), he cannot change that. But he can change his trust. Which if your talking about what's "fair", it really isn't fair because if we split his estate in thirds, and my uncle and cousin each get a third then my cousin will actually have 2/3 by lineage.
All this story to say that when parents out live their children the distribution often gets really complicated and what makes sense mathematically may not make sense emotionally.

« Last Edit: June 13, 2019, 11:17:12 AM by BeanCounter »

K-ice

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1631 on: June 13, 2019, 10:39:54 AM »
Bean C I am sorry that has happened to you.

Primogeniture is not fair monetarily but I understand it is sometimes the best, and only, way to keep family businesses and farms whole.

It may even be the best way to keep a cottage or vacation home in the family.

I know a daughter that was completely left out of the family business and therefore any inheritance. It included  a multi million property fortune that neither could have paid the other sibling 1/2 for.  Yet it would have been nice for her to still be a silent partner and receive a small dividend every year or be guaranteed something if some of the property was sold.

I really like this tip:

  • Finally, if you are an heir, be thinking how to use what you receive to unite the family, not divide it

BeanCounter

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1632 on: June 13, 2019, 11:22:06 AM »
Bean C I am sorry that has happened to you.

Primogeniture is not fair monetarily but I understand it is sometimes the best, and only, way to keep family businesses and farms whole.

It may even be the best way to keep a cottage or vacation home in the family.

I know a daughter that was completely left out of the family business and therefore any inheritance. It included  a multi million property fortune that neither could have paid the other sibling 1/2 for.  Yet it would have been nice for her to still be a silent partner and receive a small dividend every year or be guaranteed something if some of the property was sold.

I really like this tip:

  • Finally, if you are an heir, be thinking how to use what you receive to unite the family, not divide it
Thanks. Writing someone out of a will, even if it makes business sense, is ugly. It definitely hurt. I felt like a bastard child. I think that this did push my desire to become FI. A sort of fuck you. I'm rich without you anyway.
I will say this-
I am very happy with my choice to put family over money. I enjoy seeing my family for holiday's and vacations more than I would ever enjoy another annual distribution.
My Uncles did do one thing nice for me. They bought a bunch of different vacation properties throughout the country and they give me and my children the right to use them whenever I want. So that's something.

SheWhoWalksAtLunch

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1633 on: June 13, 2019, 12:19:39 PM »
Many years ago, my grandparents passed away and as their two children had pre-deceased them, the estate was to be divided up among the five grandchildren per stirpes (equal amounts to each of their children then divided equally between that child's children).  I have one sister so we were to receive 25% each.  The other three grandchildren (all descended from my parent's only sibling) were to receive 16.6% each.

....


I do wonder about the fairness of these next generation distributions.  But if the Grandparents were really worried about it they would split it 20% to each Grandchild.  Didn't all the cousins know how things would be split before the grandparents passed?

The grandkids were all in their early to mid 20's at that point (the youngest might have been 19).  The grandparents had been devastated when their first child died young from cancer.  When their remaining child committed suicide it was game over.  The grandparents passed away in quick succession soon after without making any changes to their wills.  They never discussed inheritances with any of the grandkids so the distribution came as a surprise to us all. (Honestly I was surprised I inherited anything.)

Only in these forums does my shouting in a lawyer's office get praised.  I've been mortified by my actions for years. 

talltexan

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1634 on: June 13, 2019, 12:20:31 PM »
BeanCounter-

It just doesn't seem possible to read the sum of what you've written here and think that your uncles are anything approaching decent human beings.

marion10

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1635 on: June 13, 2019, 12:36:59 PM »
Bean- you are way nicer than I would be. I have a friend whose sister had two children by artificial insemination- she had a long time partner but she had sole custody and was their only legal parent. When her children were 19 and 12, she and the partner broke up. She rewrote her will leaving her substantial estate to the Humane society and disinheriting both children. She then committed suicide. My friend was able to get the part of the will disinherting the youngest over turned. She then reached a settlement with the Humane society for the 19 year old where they got a sum but the 19 year old got a good chunk. She threatened them with bad publicity taking money from an orphan. Those poor kids.

BeanCounter

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1636 on: June 13, 2019, 12:55:27 PM »
BeanCounter-

It just doesn't seem possible to read the sum of what you've written here and think that your uncles are anything approaching decent human beings.
Here is the way I choose to see it- My Uncles got bad legal advice by a lazy attorney. I believe that they wanted to protect the farm which is their only livelihood. I was in college when the will was changed and I think they were afraid that if I received 1/5 I might, in my own need, ask for my portion and they would have to sell property to buy me out.
Could they have constructed a will that would have given me 1/5 of revenue or something for life and rights to the property if the farm corp were to ever be dissolved? Yes. A good attorney would have figured that out. Or at least that's how I choose to look at it. I can also see where my Uncles being the ones that run the place wouldn't want to cut their own income for me.
None of it is fair really.

Bean- you are way nicer than I would be. I have a friend whose sister had two children by artificial insemination- she had a long time partner but she had sole custody and was their only legal parent. When her children were 19 and 12, she and the partner broke up. She rewrote her will leaving her substantial estate to the Humane society and disinheriting both children. She then committed suicide. My friend was able to get the part of the will disinherting the youngest over turned. She then reached a settlement with the Humane society for the 19 year old where they got a sum but the 19 year old got a good chunk. She threatened them with bad publicity taking money from an orphan. Those poor kids.

I'm quite sure that I could have contested the will, especially since it was signed after my grandfather had a stroke. I'm sure I could have argued that he was not able to make a decision like that at that time. But I would have been left with lots of money and no family. Is that worth it?
In the end I have plenty of money, and my uncles will have to live with the knowledge that they left their brother's (the war hero who died from agent orange) only child out to figure it out on her own. Maybe there is a possibility they will rethink their choices and leave something to my kids? Probably not.
Am I still angry and bitter? Only when I let myself think about it. ;)

Villanelle

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1637 on: June 13, 2019, 01:07:02 PM »
This thread makes me grateful I don't have children!  Most of our estate will go to charity.  Siblings (I have one and DH has 1) will receive a set dollar amount, with the rest going out to do philanthropic work.   I suspect one sibling (also the executor) will be pleased with whatever she receives, and the other would be displeased no matter how much he were to receive unless it was at least 50% of the estate.  Thankfully, I don't much care, though I do feel somewhat pained for the executor that she will have to deal with that.  She's a badass who has no problem putting people in their place or being the bad guy when necessary and since this other person is really no relation so her, I don't see the fall out making any long term waves.

This all does make me think that maybe the will should state a higher than standard % to her for doing her executor duties! 

I'm also grateful that my parents have been very up front with us about who gets what (50/50 split among siblings), where every thing is located, and other details of the estate, down to a few specific sentimental items I want and things of that nature.  I think my sister will be entirely reasonable, and it helps that while anything we will receive will be a wonderful boon, neither of us are desperate for it or counting on it. 

ysette9

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1638 on: June 13, 2019, 01:09:47 PM »
I admire the peace you have made with your situation. That shows a lot of maturity

Captain FIRE

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1639 on: June 13, 2019, 01:11:30 PM »
In the end I have plenty of money, and my uncles will have to live with the knowledge that they left their brother's (the war hero who died from agent orange) only child out to figure it out on her own. Maybe there is a possibility they will rethink their choices and leave something to my kids? Probably not.
Am I still angry and bitter? Only when I let myself think about it. ;)

Have you ever asked them to do so? 

Not in a confrontational way, but in a polite, one time request of "you can make this right if you choose".  I mean, we're told you need to ask for raises at jobs or the company has limited incentive to do much for you.  Same thing here.  If you keep silent they 1) likely managed to forget about it, and 2) figure you don't care at all.  You obviously can communicate it very softly - understanding why they did it, such the desire to keep the farm going and not be split up, recognizing that your father wasn't contributing any longer to working of it - but also gently noting that as it stands, you have lost both your father at an early age and any emotional/supportive benefits he might have provided, and any family legacy he might have otherwise received if he had lived longer.

(If it were me, I'd put it in writing and copy my cousins so that they know too.  Who knows, if the uncles don't fix it maybe the cousins will.  But I get that even asking the uncles may be more aggressive already than it sounds like you're willing to do and rock the boat.)

mm1970

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1640 on: June 13, 2019, 02:09:03 PM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.
I don't think it's weird really.

By the time my grandfather's estate/ trust was settled (when his second wife died), it was really wonky.  She was 98.  I was 46.  By then:
- two of his 4 daughters had died.  So their 1/4 (each) got split among their children.  They each had 3 children.  So, those 6 grandchildren got 1/12 a piece.
- one his daughters was alive, she got her 1/4
- the fourth was actually a DIL.  His will left her 1/8, and left the other 1/8 to her children.  She had 6 children.  But one of them died.  So each of her children, instead of getting 1/24, got 1/20.

Nothing wrong with wonky.  He wanted to leave 1/4 to each of his daughters and the family of his son, who died relatively young.

honeybbq

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1641 on: June 13, 2019, 02:13:59 PM »
Bean- you are way nicer than I would be. I have a friend whose sister had two children by artificial insemination- she had a long time partner but she had sole custody and was their only legal parent. When her children were 19 and 12, she and the partner broke up. She rewrote her will leaving her substantial estate to the Humane society and disinheriting both children. She then committed suicide. My friend was able to get the part of the will disinherting the youngest over turned. She then reached a settlement with the Humane society for the 19 year old where they got a sum but the 19 year old got a good chunk. She threatened them with bad publicity taking money from an orphan. Those poor kids.

Why would you disinherit your own minor children??

Psychstache

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1642 on: June 13, 2019, 02:33:53 PM »
Bean- you are way nicer than I would be. I have a friend whose sister had two children by artificial insemination- she had a long time partner but she had sole custody and was their only legal parent. When her children were 19 and 12, she and the partner broke up. She rewrote her will leaving her substantial estate to the Humane society and disinheriting both children. She then committed suicide. My friend was able to get the part of the will disinherting the youngest over turned. She then reached a settlement with the Humane society for the 19 year old where they got a sum but the 19 year old got a good chunk. She threatened them with bad publicity taking money from an orphan. Those poor kids.

Why would you disinherit your own minor children??

Given that the person committed suicide, I would imagine they had some distorted, irrational thinking going on.

ABC123

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1643 on: June 13, 2019, 02:36:49 PM »
Bean- you are way nicer than I would be. I have a friend whose sister had two children by artificial insemination- she had a long time partner but she had sole custody and was their only legal parent. When her children were 19 and 12, she and the partner broke up. She rewrote her will leaving her substantial estate to the Humane society and disinheriting both children. She then committed suicide. My friend was able to get the part of the will disinherting the youngest over turned. She then reached a settlement with the Humane society for the 19 year old where they got a sum but the 19 year old got a good chunk. She threatened them with bad publicity taking money from an orphan. Those poor kids.

Wait, is that legal?  A parent with a minor child can legally give her entire estate away, no legal requirement to financially care for her child?  Seems like there should be something that requires at least part of the estate to be put in some sort of account or trust to be used for the care of the child.

Goldielocks

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1644 on: June 13, 2019, 02:50:21 PM »
ABC123   ... I think that is why the portion regarding the minor child was overtured upon appeal....   A parent can not absolve their responsibility for a minor dependent child by fully and intentionally disinheriting them.  If there are assets, they need to be used to meet the dependents' minimum needs first, and the remainder can be distributed as directed.

BeanCounter

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1645 on: June 13, 2019, 02:58:06 PM »
Grandparents may not have known how many children their kids would have. Per Stirpes is a nice contingency, but it produces really weird outcomes if--say--one side has a single child, and the other side has seven.

As for me, I prefer primogeniture. Make damn sure your oldest can manage things, then put them in charge.
I don't think it's weird really.

By the time my grandfather's estate/ trust was settled (when his second wife died), it was really wonky.  She was 98.  I was 46.  By then:
- two of his 4 daughters had died.  So their 1/4 (each) got split among their children.  They each had 3 children.  So, those 6 grandchildren got 1/12 a piece.
- one his daughters was alive, she got her 1/4
- the fourth was actually a DIL.  His will left her 1/8, and left the other 1/8 to her children.  She had 6 children.  But one of them died.  So each of her children, instead of getting 1/24, got 1/20.

Nothing wrong with wonky.  He wanted to leave 1/4 to each of his daughters and the family of his son, who died relatively young.

I think my situation is a great example of how it becomes wonky.
Trying not to over share too much here. Because my mother died young, it is likely that if my grandfather doesn't change anything I will (at a fairly young age) inherit a couple million. My uncle would get the same. My only cousin (my uncle's child) will get nothing until his father passes. So my life changes, my cousin's doesn't.

On my dad's side, with the farm that's just a lot more complicated. But again I think they had a hard time with the notion that they would have been paying me an income on money they made and their kids would have gotten nothing. And they didn't want to buy me out. So the simplest thing, however painful was to cut me out.

BeanCounter

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1646 on: June 13, 2019, 03:03:26 PM »
In the end I have plenty of money, and my uncles will have to live with the knowledge that they left their brother's (the war hero who died from agent orange) only child out to figure it out on her own. Maybe there is a possibility they will rethink their choices and leave something to my kids? Probably not.
Am I still angry and bitter? Only when I let myself think about it. ;)

Have you ever asked them to do so? 

Not in a confrontational way, but in a polite, one time request of "you can make this right if you choose".  I mean, we're told you need to ask for raises at jobs or the company has limited incentive to do much for you.  Same thing here.  If you keep silent they 1) likely managed to forget about it, and 2) figure you don't care at all.  You obviously can communicate it very softly - understanding why they did it, such the desire to keep the farm going and not be split up, recognizing that your father wasn't contributing any longer to working of it - but also gently noting that as it stands, you have lost both your father at an early age and any emotional/supportive benefits he might have provided, and any family legacy he might have otherwise received if he had lived longer.

(If it were me, I'd put it in writing and copy my cousins so that they know too.  Who knows, if the uncles don't fix it maybe the cousins will.  But I get that even asking the uncles may be more aggressive already than it sounds like you're willing to do and rock the boat.)
Before my mother died, she did. She told them she didn't think it was right, and it was a dishonor to their brother.
I'm sure they weren't too worried about it because they know that my mother's family was well to do.
I would only ask for something to change if I though my children had an interest in farming. Or if myself or my kids needed a place to live, I would ask to have the right to live in one of the homes on the property.
I don't see the point in asking for anything I don't need.
Is it fair? Probably not. Life isn't fair, but it's still beautiful.

Goldielocks

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1647 on: June 13, 2019, 03:21:33 PM »
May parents are approaching 80 and have quite a substantial retirement portfolio.   One that would be hard to spend down even if they pay for high quality long term care.

They may choose to bypass my sister and I and give all their money to the grandkids, plus a could of charities.   I could very, very, very much use that money (but not desparate because I could also just un-FIRE).    I feel weird about my feelings on it.. Not my money and all of that, but also, Dad himself inherited the equivalent of $120k at age 40... which he admits was a huge help to him at that time.    I truly think the reason may be that my sister's husband is very well compensated exec and they obviously don't need money, and my parents wanted to always be fair and equal with us, and they don't want to give sis more money that she doesn't need.

On the one hand, i am delighted to have an excellent personal relationship with them.  On the other hand, I have a lump of <<feelings>> about the money side which I just look away from.   

Does that happen to anyone else?  That not-entirely complementary <<feelings>> about inheritance arise despite everything being great otherwise?   

cloudsail

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1648 on: June 13, 2019, 04:19:23 PM »
May parents are approaching 80 and have quite a substantial retirement portfolio.   One that would be hard to spend down even if they pay for high quality long term care.

They may choose to bypass my sister and I and give all their money to the grandkids, plus a could of charities.   I could very, very, very much use that money (but not desparate because I could also just un-FIRE).    I feel weird about my feelings on it.. Not my money and all of that, but also, Dad himself inherited the equivalent of $120k at age 40... which he admits was a huge help to him at that time.    I truly think the reason may be that my sister's husband is very well compensated exec and they obviously don't need money, and my parents wanted to always be fair and equal with us, and they don't want to give sis more money that she doesn't need.

On the one hand, i am delighted to have an excellent personal relationship with them.  On the other hand, I have a lump of <<feelings>> about the money side which I just look away from.   

Does that happen to anyone else?  That not-entirely complementary <<feelings>> about inheritance arise despite everything being great otherwise?   

Oh yes. I wrote earlier in this thread about our inheritance story when DH's mother passed away. Before she died she stated that she wanted DH's older brother to have the house and give us half its original purchase price (the house has since appreciated). It is a substantial amount. For various reasons, we only got less than half of that money. Everyone is on great terms, I just try to forget the original wishes of my mother in law, and the fact that DH's brother is now living in a very HCOL city without a mortgage.

marion10

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Re: Inheritance Drama: You Got Any? Stories Wanted.
« Reply #1649 on: June 13, 2019, 06:12:46 PM »
For the awful suicide story- yes it was illegal to disinherit the minor child (I assume this was a do it yourself will)- the will was left with the body. There obviously was some disordered thinking going on.