According to UBS Wealth Management Americas, roughly $40 trillion is expected to be transferred to heirs by 2050. However, only have of people surveyed in a recent study say that they have discussed inheritance plans with their children. For the other half who have not yet discussed future plans with their children, there may be multiple reasons for this.
Baby boomers are estimated to be due to inherit $8.4 billion from their parents in the coming years, and this has led to an increase in court battles between family members over wills. While most disputes regarding wills are referred by courts to mediators, some cases take a long time to resolve in court.
The aging and retirement of the baby boom generation seems to be all over the news these days, as our most populous generation’s aging process has impacts everywhere from healthcare to driving safety to a greater need for assisted living. Another big area of impact that economics anticipate from the baby boom generation is in the transfer of wealth to their children. Referred to as an “inheritance boom” many believe that the self-made generation of the 1950s and 60s are poised to bestow significant wealth upon their families when they pass away.
A trial over a contested will that began back in September is finally nearing its end as the final witness took the stand this week. The trial is over the two versions of a will executed by a man who owned and operated Hudson News stands, which many readers have seen in airports around the country.
In older generations it has been tradition to leave family heirlooms to the first born child in a family. This tradition dates back to the Anglo Saxon and British roots of our America’s laws. In fact, in Great Briton today there are still some assets that must be passed down this way, such as nobility titles. However, in the modern day United States most families do things differently and estate laws do not dictate the order or preference by age amongst children. As a result, families are left to determine what is fair in their own circumstance and divide up what can be limited resources or special family heirlooms among several worthy recipients.
The 15-year-old daughter of the late actor Paul Walker will receive the entirety of her father’s large estate, reports say. The actor passed away last year as a result of a car accident in which the car caught fire. The 40-year-old actor had been the star of a franchise of racing movies that had earned him significant sums and helped pay for the $10 million home he passes on to his daughter. Many of those films remain popular and one more is set for release, indicating that the estate may continue to grow over the coming years.
An 80-year-old man was recent convicted of attempted murder in a middle-of-the-night shooting that took place at the home of his son. Prosecutors said that the man showed up at his son’s home and attempted to kill him after the son inherited an estate from the man’s mother that he apparently expected to receive.
Cultural critics often accuse Americans of trying to avoid talking about death. It's a line of argument that dates to at least the 1940s, when the British novelist Evelyn Waugh published a satirical send-up of the funeral industry called "The Loved One."
There are a lot of safeguards in the estate planning process to ensure that the plans that go into effect for distributing a person’s estate are their own. This is because our legal system places emphasis on honoring the wishes of the deceased as much as possible, even in situations where it is difficult to figure out what their wishes were. At the same time we also impose some basic standards for executing a valid will and making valid changes as a way to reduce the likelihood of fraud or undue influence.