In a time that is likely already laden with mixed emotions, an inheritance dispute can only add to the stress. Despite these sensitive times, siblings in California and across the nation find themselves knee-deep in a battle over the will of a deceased loved one. Are there ways to go about this process in a healthy manner, or even avoid the dispute altogether?
MarketWatch highlights one common angle of sibling wars over inheritance: that of a seemingly imbalanced will. When a parent does not divide a will evenly among siblings, an inheritance disagreement could likely be right around the corner. Ultimately, the sibling with the most inheritance benefits takes on the hefty role of dispute mediator. In fact, MarketWatch points out that a significant number of inheritance fights occur between siblings — with 44 percent of disputes taking place among surviving brothers and sisters. Most disputes involved property or land, while roughly 21 percent involved jewelry or memorabilia. MarketWatch suggests that siblings in these tough situations could ask themselves what their mother or father would have likely done; they can also check wills to observe what happens to money that has been disclaimed.
Aging Care also provides an insightful scope into the issue of sibling inheritance disputes, referring to a potentially more complicated situation that involves children fighting over money before a parent has even died. When one sibling fears that another has prioritized wealth over family care, they may choose to first communicate with the sibling by holding a family meeting. By explaining to a sibling that, without his or her help caring for the elderly parent, the parent may have to go into a nursing home. Although this may seem to be threatening, it could serve as a wake up call to a sibling who appears to have priorities in all the wrong places.