Age Gracefully With A Plan In Place

Why do you need a disinheritance clause?

On Behalf of | Jan 14, 2022 | Estate Planning |

Disinheriting someone from your will simply means not leaving them an inheritance. This term only applies to those who would naturally inherit otherwise. For instance, if you want to leave a child out of your will, you can disinherit them. If you simply leave a close friend out, they’re not being disinherited because they shouldn’t have expected to get anything from you in the first place. 

This makes it seem as if disinheriting someone would be simple. You could just leave that individual out of the will. After all, if the will tells the court how you want your assets to be divided, and it makes no mention of that person, it feels like that makes it clear that you don’t want them to get anything. Why would you need to go beyond that and add a specific disinheritance clause saying that you intended to leave them nothing? 

This simple clause can prevent some estate disputes 

Disinheriting someone can be emotionally troubling for them, and it often leads to disputes. They may not have realized you were planning to do so, and they may feel confused or hurt. They may decide to challenge your decision to try to get some of your estate for themselves, or they may even claim that you must have forgotten because you would never have chosen to disinherit them on purpose. 

If your will says nothing, then these claims may have some basis, and everything has to get sorted out in court. If your will has a clause saying that you intentionally left them out and you are well aware of what you’re doing, they may still not like your decision, but at least it’s clear that you made that decision on purpose. This can eliminate some disputes. 

Setting up an estate plan can be complicated, especially when you want to do things of this nature. You must know about all of the legal options at your disposal.