Fighting with your family members over your inheritance can be horrible. Inheritance disputes can be very ugly. An inheritance dispute can break up a family or make them fight for decades. No-one wants that to happen to their family. There are ways to avoid having these disputes.

Why do inheritance conflicts occur?

It is important to note that a lot of inheritance conflicts occur when a person passes away and does not have a last will and testament that outlines how he wants his assets to be distributed. Sadly, family members can have a fight over what they feel the deceased family member owes them. They can get angry with the deceased family member, and they can even fight with each other over their inheritance.

How to avoid inheritance disputes:

  • Respecting the contents of the will is vital. Even if you might not agree with your father’s wishes in his will, you must still respect his wishes.
  • It may be a good idea for you to meet with your family members and have an informal meeting. Get all your family members together and try to resolve your inheritance dispute informally. You can talk about your grievances.
  • It is essential that you are ready to compromise. Being willing to compromise may assist in resolving your inheritance dispute with your other family members.
  • If you and your family members are unable to agree on a compromise, you should think about mediation or arbitration. These are the options that you should choose before you go to court.

Stop your family from having an inheritance dispute before it’s too late.

While you are still alive, you can do the following:

  • Talk to your attorney before you make any changes to your estate plan.
  • Update your estate plan often. This is crucial.

An inheritance dispute can really upset your family members. Make sure that you do all you can to avoid inheritance disputes amongst the members of your family while you are still alive. You wouldn’t want your children not to speak to each other for years because of an inheritance dispute.

DR MERVIN MESSIAS
JD (Juris Doctor) / BA, LLB (Wits) / TEP (Trust & Estate Practitioner) / MTP (Master Tax Practitioner – S.A)