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Have You Thought About How Your Children Will Divide Household Items?


These items can easily be overlooked in your comprehensive estate plan, especially when there are bigger ticket items such as a piece of property or substantial assets in a retirement account.

But household items can also easily become the subject of an estate planning dispute or arguments among your children and other family members. There are several different strategies you can use to distribute your household items. You may, for example, spell out specific items that are to be received by someone in the family.

If you have a child who loves your wine collection or is also an art aficionado have a conversation with them in advance about what it would mean for them to receive these assets. If you intend to distribute other things equally, you may want to discuss with them how this could alter what else they receive in the estate. A lottery is another opportunity to dispose of household items that you may spell out in your estate plans.

For example, a brief description of every item you own may be put on a slip of paper and siblings can take turns drawing them out until the hat is empty. Another popular method for distributing household items that may not have been specifically called out in your will is to take turns. This allows each sibling to pick a desired item one at a time until everything has been disposed of. If there are remaining items of personal property, those can be donated to somewhere that needs it.

Planning ahead can help decrease the possibility of serious arguments and conflicts that can delay administration of your estate. Meeting with an estate planning lawyer is also strongly recommended so that you can discuss all assets in your estate and whether or not your estate planning strategies still align with your personal goals.

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