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The various drama surrounding legal estate battles proves the importance of proper estate planning. New lawsuits arise each day surrounding the legal battles of trusts, wills, and estates. In order to lawsuit-proof your estate before your passing, be sure to keep these helpful tips in mind:

  1. Avoid lawsuits by treating each sibling equally. Whenever you favor one sibling over the other, there is conflict. If anyone feels as if they are not getting their fair share, you can expect a family battle.
  2. You must specifically define who gets which treasures. You should have a list specifically identifying who gets certain items.
  3. Make sure to keep track of all loans and advances within the family. If you have gifted one of your children $50,000 as a down payment to their first house, you can identify that gift as an advancement so it is subtracted from their inheritance.
  4. If one of your children acts as your business partner, you may want to transfer the business to them with a written contract before your death. This way, no siblings will feel that they have been unfairly excluded. Likewise, if you are looking to give a property to one of your children or grandchildren, get a qualified personal residence trust to guarantee the transaction.
  5. Confirm the ownership of all of your assets before listing them in your will.
  6. If you have a second marriage, you may want to get a unique lawyer to handle your finances.
  7. If there is chance for family debate, refrain from putting any of your children or your spouse as the executor of your estate. Rather, consider appointing a corporate executor.
  8. If your age may question your ability to make estate planning decisions, get a physician and geriatric psychiatrists to sign your documents.
  9. Be sure to include a no contest clause to prevent estate fights.
  10. If it is in your plans, be sure to specifically spell out any wishes of disinheritance.

Contact Gaudy Law today and allow us to guide you through the process of successful estate planning conversations. We can help you determine the best way to approach this trying conversation.

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