One of the most precious gifts that we have is family. We celebrate holidays and birthdays together, and mourn the loss of others together. We learn everything from our traditions to our values from those who have come before us. Those of us who are lucky enough to still have our parents and grandparents with us understandably consider ourselves to be lucky. It has become somewhat of a presumption among Millennials (those now age 21 to 36) that when they pass they will receive an inheritance. However, studies have shown that this expectation does not always become a reality.
A Generation of Entitlement?
Although previous generations often passed down significant amounts of money, and the Baby Boomer generation (those now age 53 to 72) has an estimated $30 trillion, those understandable expectations are no longer supported by current data. In fact, according to research from the Natixis U.S. Investor Survey, while nearly 70 percent of children expect to receive something from their parents, only 40 percent of parents have such plans in place. More than four in 10 Baby Boomers have actually written a will. Yet 76 percent of young adults believe that they will have a better financial future than their parents. By relying upon parents, grandparents, and older generations to supply them with the finances to help support them – especially in their later retirement – they often run the risk of not saving as much money as they will actually require.
While it is not abnormal in the U.S. (the second most generous country) for individuals to leave their assets to family, friends, charity, or the government, in other parts of the world they do not have such choices. In some countries it is actually illegal not to pass assets on to family heirs, and in others the practice is not typical.
Sharing Intentions to Calm Expectation
One of the best things that we can do is to deal with issues of inheritance before we pass. Since the passing of a loved one can be an emotional time to begin with, the distribution of that individual’s possessions can prove to only compound those emotions. By fully communicating with family members prior to one’s passing, and sharing intentions with them, they will be much better prepared for what to expect that they will – and will not – be given.
Contact the Texas Estate Planning Attorneys at Hegwood Law Group
By working with a knowledgeable and experienced Texas estate planning attorney, you can better understand the estate planning process and develop a plan to ensure that your wishes for the future will be carried out. At Hegwood Law Group, we understand the emotions, confusion, and frustration that can come from not having a plan for one’s estate. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, contact us online or call us at (281) 885-8826 today.