Share

LLG Blog

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Difference Between Equal and Equitable Inheritances

When it comes to estate planning, many individuals believe that dividing assets equally among adult children is the best choice. However, there are situations in which leaving each child the same amount might not be practical. For this reason, it is important to know the difference between an equal inheritance and an equitable inheritance, in which each child receives a fair share based on his or her circumstances.

What is an equal inheritance?

In this situation, each child gets the same amount of the remaining estate after both parents have died.

This option works well when the needs of each child are the same, or the parents provided similar support to each child in the past. Moreover, each child must be mentally or emotionally capable and financially responsible.

It is important to note that cases in which an estate includes real property and other tangible assets, it may be necessary to determine the differences in value of these assets in order to leave each child an appropriate amount. Lastly, leaving an equal inheritance may be the best way to avoid the emotional and financial costs of disputes.

What is an equitable inheritance?

In some cases, leaving each child and equal inheritance may not be the right thing to do. For example, it may be wise to reward a child who has taken on the role of caregiver for an aging parent or to compensate him or her for lost time and wages. There are also circumstances in which children may have been given different amounts of money while the parents were alive either for a wedding, educational expenses or a down payment on a home.

Lastly, for those who have a disabled child who receives public benefits, it may be necessary to provide for living expenses and medical needs in a special needs trust. In all of these situations, an equitable distribution of the estate assets is the best option.

The Bottom Line

In the end, determinations about the distribution of an estate to surviving children should be made in a way that will preserve family harmony. For this reason, it is important to discuss your decisions with your children and engage the services of an experienced estate planning attorney.




Archived Posts

2017
2016
2015
December
November
October
September
August
July
June
May
April
March
January
2014
2013


Littorno Law Group assists clients throughout Contra Costa County from our offices in Pittsburg and Walnut Creek including Antioch, Brentwood, Clayton, Concord, Lafayette, Moraga, Martinez, Danville, San Ramon, Pleasanton, Livermore, Fremont, Oakland, Piedmont, San Diego, Escondido, San Marcos, Vista, Oceanside, Carlsbad, Fallbrook, Bonsall, Encinitas, La Jolla, Poway, Rancho Bernardo, Del Mar, and the surrounding areas and suburbs.



© 2017 Littorno Law Group | Disclaimer
PITTSBURG OFFICE/MAILING: 2211 Railroad Ave, Pittsburg, CA 94565
| Phone: 800.689.4211 | 925.432.4211
WALNUT CREEK OFFICE: 3100 Oak Rd, Suite 100, Walnut Creek, CA 94597
| Phone: 800.689.4211 | 925.937.4211
RANCHO BERNARDO OFFICE: 11440 West Bernardo Court, Suite 300, San Diego, CA 92127
| Phone: 800.689.4211 | 760.525.3140
DEL MAR OFFICE: 12526 High Bluff Drive, Suite 300, San Diego, CA 92130
| Phone: 800.689.4211 | 760.525.3140

Estate Planning with Revocable Living Trusts | Probate Estate Administration | Elder Law and Medi-Cal Planning | Veteran's Benefits | Prepaid Legal Plans | Advanced Estate Planning | Planning for Children | Estate Litigation | IRA Beneficiary Trusts | Littorno Law Trust Maintenance Program | Estate Tax Planning | Pet Trusts | Estate Planning/Non-Traditional Families | | Staff | Library

FacebookTwitterLinked-In Company

Attorney Website Design by
Amicus Creative


Make a Payment