The passing of household treasures from one generation to another should be a welcome tradition in most households, however sadly, this process can trigger lasting family rifts if not done correctly. There are lots of stories of families that have actually split over a silver tea service or a portrait of a long-dead ancestor.
If you do not want that to take place in your family, here’s what you can do as part of your estate planning:
Be sure to have a will.
Most people understand the significance of having a will, but if you have household treasures to pass on, it is critical that you execute a will. It ought to be as particular as possible, with information about each item and who gets it. Just specifying that heirlooms need to be “divided similarly” can result in a family feud.
In some states, you can include a “no-contest” stipulation into your will that will immediately disinherit any successor that contests a will. However, Florida does not recognize no-contest stipulations and courts here have discovered them unenforceable.
Create a list and share it.
All too often kids will discover after Mom or Father has actually passed that the Tiffany lamp was guaranteed to more than one brother or sister. This is why it is crucial to develop a list of your family treasures, assign names to each product and share that list throughout a family event while you’re still alive and well. This list can then be included into your will or trust, so it ends up being lawfully binding.
Trust an executor.
If you merely can not make a decision regarding who gets what, then you can leave it in the hands of your administrator to make that distribution. Simply make sure the individual you pick as your executor has good mediation skills.
Conduct an auction.
Some individuals elect to either liquidate the treasures at auction and location the assets in trust for successors or to hold a family “auction” where each kid is offered numerous credits they utilize to “bid” on the items they desire. It’s an innovative method to head off a family battle if you see one looming.