It is an unfortunate truth that not all in-laws enjoy positive relationships with one another. In fact, a number of people experience hostile or acrimonious relationships with their relatives. While there is no requirement that you like your in-laws or treat them well, this situation can be made much more complex if you have a good relationship with your child and want to make sure that this child receives something through your estate plan. Additionally, if you decide to completely exclude a child from an estate plan, it is likely that a court of law will focus on whether you lawfully removed your child from receiving any assets.
Deciding whether to Disinherit a Child
It can be difficult to decide whether to exclude a child from receiving assets through an estate plan if a problematic in-law is involved. In some situations, parents find it impossible to move past the in-law and resolve to disinherit the child as a punishment. If you are debating disinheriting a spouse, however, this decision should not be made lightly. Disinheriting a child frequently results in a number of complex emotions. If you decide to disinherit a child through a will rather than a trust, the words found in the will will be the controlling factor that prevents a child from receiving assets. To avoid the complications of disinheritance, it is often a much better decision to other options. For example, assets intended for a beneficiary can be held in a trust in such a way that a spouse is not able to access this amount. It is also possible to be assets to grandchildren instead of the child. While skipping a generation in this manner can be insulting, sometimes it is the best possible solution.