Fights over an inheritance are nothing new. Many of them make their way into courtrooms around the country, airing the family dirty laundry for all to see. Lawyers tend to be the only real winners in the end.
Mediation, however, can be a very practical and affordable forum to settle the squabbles before litigation.
The importance and increasing popularity of mediation was the subject of a recent article in The Wall Street Journal titled “If Heirs Are Fighting, Try Mediation.” The article is in the form of an interview with prominent lawyer and mediator, William Zabel. As Mr. Zabel points out, not every matter needs to be litigated, but must be decided.
Truth be told, the best way to avoid litigation, or even mediation, is to carefully structure your estate plan from the outset. Likely you know the “players” all too well. For example, which of the in-laws are most likely to become the outlaws? Are there any heirs who may be more likely to lose their inheritance to squandering, divorces, lawsuits and bankruptcies?
As you can see, there is much to consider when constructing your estate plan. Make sure you engage competent legal counsel early in the process. Likely she or he has “seen it all” and can help you skirt the minefields.
Have you or your elderly loved ones got your affairs in order by updating your Will and Trust so that your home and cash assets are protected?? There has been many changes in laws and your life that may have impacted your estate plan. Call us for a review!
If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation please call Attorney Patrick Kelleher at 781-871-PLAN (7526) or by email at Pat@myfamilylifeplan.com
Our firm helps families taking care of them for life. We not only “create” their Will and Trust, but we “maintain it and keep it updated” for them throughout their life! The meter is not running for our ‘Client Care Plan’ members!
Patrick J. Kelleher is a South Shore, MA resident and estate planning attorney serving and protecting families and businesses in the South Shore, MA area. For more information on estate planning visit our firm’s website at www.MyFamilyLifePlan.com where you can check out our Blog, free Newsletter library, free Estate Planning Channel on Youtube and sign up for a Free e-Newsletter!
Also serving the following communities South of Boston; Quincy, Milton, Braintree, Randolph, Holbrook, Weymouth, Scituate, Norwell, Hingham, Cohasset, Hull, Hanover, Pembroke, Duxbury, Marshfield, Plymouth, Rockland, Hanson, Halifax, Plympton, Carver, Abington, Whitman, Kingston
This article is not intended to provide legal or tax advice or create or imply an attorney-client relationship. No information contained herein is a substitute for a personal consultation with an attorney.
Reference: The Wall Street Journal (March 15, 2013) “If Heirs Are Fighting, Try Mediation”