Estates & Wills

Individuals Make Plans for Loved Ones and Property for After They Die

They believe their plans for their loved ones and property (“testamentary plans”) as laid out in their wills will provide in the orderly, peaceful passing of their estates (personal property, real estate and intangible personal property such as stocks) to their beneficiaries.

Too Often Those Plans Fail

In these cases beneficiaries keep lawyers busy fighting bitterly over their loved-one’s estates. They use reasoning such as:

  • I did more for Testator when he/she was infirmed
  • He/she loved me more
  • It is not fair that you get the ____ and I only get the ____.
  • He/she would not have left more to X than to me because I am his/her spouse/son/daughter/favorite bartender etc.
  • And so on

aboutusThe testator could have thought that leaving equal shares to his/her children was most fair and equitable. But suppose it isn’t money to be divided—suppose there are antiques, houses, livestock and/or commercial properties to be divided. Who determines their values, who decides who get the silverware?

It’s Not Just the Inheritance

It is easy to say that the testator is no longer here to worry about who gets what. And, of course, that is so. But the testator who was a loving parent for example may have been worried mightily about the possible estrangement of his/her children that often results from these battles over property.

Lawyers, Courts and Fees: The Traditional Way to Resolve These Disputes

The traditional way families resolve these bitter, emotionally charged disputes is to duke it out in court— significantly diminishing their inheritances with legal fees and court costs.

When, after often long periods of waiting, the cases finally come to trial, the judge resolves the dispute with a decision. Unfortunately there is nothing the judge can do to preserve or restore the family relationships that may have been destroyed during the time leading up to trial.

Mediation: A Better Way to Resolve These Disputes

At Positive Solutions Group we have helped many families work through these problems successfully. “Successfully”, in this case, means the dispute(s) was resolved and family relationships were preserved.

02Litigation and the court system can resolve the legal issues but can do nothing at all about the preservation of family. In fact they can make family matters much worse.