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How do you leave someone out of your will?

On Behalf of | Aug 27, 2022 | Estate Planning |

There may be a situation in which you want to leave one of your heirs out of the will, meaning that they will not inherit anything. In some cases, parents do this because they’ve had a falling out with one of their children. But it could also be something positive, such as knowing that one of your children is financially well-off and doesn’t need the inheritance, but the other does.

Regardless of your reasons, how do you cut someone out of your will?

Using a disinheritance clause

Perhaps the best way to do this is to add a disinheritance clause to the estate plan. It’s a fairly simple clause, just stating that the individual in question has been disinherited and you chose not to leave them anything. You may also want to attach a note to the estate plan letting them know why, or you can talk to them in person. But you don’t even have to give them a reason. The clause is legally binding simply because that’s what you wanted.

Another tactic that people sometimes use is to leave the individual in question with a very small amount of money or minor assets. They do this as a way of showing that they haven’t simply forgotten that heir. They do know that the person is supposed to inherit and it’s not a mistake that they didn’t get as much as the other beneficiaries. But you certainly don’t have to leave them anything if you just include a disinheritance clause to show your intentions.

Setting up an estate plan like this can get complicated, so be sure you know what steps to take.