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Do heirs need equal shares of your estate?

On Behalf of | Oct 3, 2022 | Estate Planning |

Many people get stuck on the idea of an estate having to be equally divided when they’re taking care of their estate planning. While that’s a noble thought, it doesn’t always make sense to divide an estate perfectly equally amongst heirs. 

Instead of thinking about everything having to be divided equally, you should think about what’s equitable or fair. Thinking in terms of what each heir needs and their life goals may help you to determine the best way to divide the estate

Special life situations

Sometimes, people have assets that require work. For example, a family business. Passing those down equally could mean that some heirs are stuck with something they really don’t want. It’s best if you look at each person’s current life and their wishes to determine what assets they might fare best with. Working out the terms of the estate so everyone can receive an inheritance they can use will benefit them and may help you feel better about the estate plan. 

Tax bracket considerations

Some assets that are passed down to heirs are taxable. This is something that must be considered when you’re trying to determine how to divide the assets. It’s possible that the heirs will be in different tax brackets that could make the actual amount they walk away with vastly different, even if the pre-tax amount was the same. 

Your estate plan should reflect your wishes. Working with someone who’s familiar with your assets and wishes is beneficial because they can explain the options you have to make those wishes a reality. Getting things set as soon as possible can help give you peace of mind. 

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