COVID-19 NOTICE: WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS AND ARE DEEMED ESSENTIAL BY THE STATE OF MINNESOTA.

We are working remotely and all of us continue to be available by telephone or email. In alignment with national, state and local initiatives as it relates to the coronavirus, we remain open for business and have changed the way we are working for the health and well-being of our employees, and you, our valued clients and colleagues. Read more

Mason & Helmers
We Welcome Your Call
  • Phone 651-323-2548
  • Toll Free 877-389-5533

Mistakes made in your will can lead to beneficiary disputes

You want your beneficiaries to be happy with whatever they inherit after you are gone. You, therefore, take time to work out who is going to get what and make the appropriate provisions in your will.

In so doing, you must be careful not to make errors that could result in disgruntled heirs who could end up arguing with each other over their inheritance, or lack thereof. With that in mind, here are three common mistakes to avoid:

1. Naming an irresponsible heir

Naming a financially irresponsible child or sibling in your will as a direct beneficiary could see that particular inheritance quickly disappear. The cause might be gambling, addiction to alcohol or drugs or a weakness for expensive spending sprees. You might consider creating a lifetime spendthrift trust, which would benefit your heir and protect the assets from creditors.

2. Naming a minor

If you name a minor child as the beneficiary of your life insurance policy, he or she will inherit the proceeds at the age of 18, and given the child’s lack of financial experience, those proceeds could be gone in a flash. Instead, consider naming your estate as the beneficiary. Your assets would go through probate and into a testamentary trust established for your child through the terms of your will.

3. Naming your child as a sole beneficiary

You might name your eldest child as the sole beneficiary of your will. The idea is for him to pay your final expenses and funeral costs, then distribute the balance in equal amounts to his siblings. The problem is that your eldest son is under no obligation to use this money as you intended. He could keep it all for himself, in which case beneficiary disputes would likely erupt.

Taking precautions

An experienced attorney will tell you that updating your will periodically is essential. This the best way to ensure the accuracy of your final wishes and instructions to avoid beneficiary disputes after you pass away. Even the most mild-mannered child can become a force to reckon with if there is a major issue regarding the inheritance he or she expected.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

For Assistance with Estate Disputes & Other Matters, Contact Us

To learn more about the firm and how we can assist you,
contact Mason & Helmers in St. Paul, Minnesota. Call 651-323-2548 or 877-389-5533 (toll free) to set up an appointment.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review
rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories — legal ability and general ethical standards.

Contact Our Attorneys

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Email Us For A Response
Mason & Helmers

Mason & Helmers
332 Minnesota Street
Suite W-3070
St. Paul, MN 55101

Toll Free: 877-389-5533
Phone: 651-323-2548
St. Paul Law Office Map