A lot of hard decisions must be made during the estate planning process. Individuals who are creating an estate plan must identify heirs and beneficiaries and determine what type of asset distribution plan fits the needs of everyone involved, as well as the estate itself. While many people choose to leave their assets to their spouse and their children, a fair distribution of estate assets is not always an equal distribution.
This means that a parent must decide how to address issues of equality and fairness when creating an estate plan. Sometimes parents face this issue when they decide who will manage their estate once they pass away. Choosing one child may leave the others feeling like they were cheated. However, having all children serve as estate administrators or co-trustees can result in feuds that threaten the viability of the estate. So what can an estate planner do to ensure that his or her estate is properly managed?
One option is to have an outside party manage the estate’s affairs, including administering wills and serving as trustees. This outsider may be another family member or it could be some sort of financial or legal professional. Of course, choosing another family member can also result in disputes, which are sometimes simply unavoidable. What is important to remember is that those who engage in estate planning need to have trusted individuals upon whom they can rely to carry out their wishes for their estate.
Of course, this is just a small piece of the estate planning process and only one example of how fairness and equality can be added into the mix. Those who want to ensure that their assets are adequately cared for after they are gone, and that their loved ones are provided for in accordance with their wishes, should consider discussing these matters with a skilled legal professional they trust.