Did you know that only 45 percent of adults in the United States of America have a living will as of the year 2021? One of the biggest predicaments that occurs when a parent passes away is determining how to divide inherited property between siblings. While a will or a trust will provide some type of plan or outline, it is still important to figure out how to divvy out inherited assets.
Sadly, wills and inherited property can lead to conflict, hurt feelings, and resentment between siblings during a difficult time in their lives. This means that it is tricky to determine how to divide inherited property between siblings in a fair way.
The good news is that you’re in the perfect place to learn how to navigate this tricky precipice of deciding how to divide the inherited property. Keep reading this article in order to learn more today.
Get Plans for Inherited Assets in Writing
The first thing that should be done when it comes to how to divide inherited property is to get the plans for it down in writing on a piece of paper. As sad as it is, there are often clashes and conflicts that happen when a loved one passes away and no one is sure who the inherited property goes to.
Odds are that siblings already have their minds made up on what they’re going to receive when it comes to inherited assets. This is made worse by the different financial situations that these siblings find themselves in. It doesn’t take long for dividing inherited assets to become difficult when things aren’t laid out on a piece of paper that has legal power.
It is important for the parent that has passed away to layout a will or a trust prior to their death with clear determinations on who is getting what assets, and how to transfer land title after their passing. Land and homes are tricky enough, but if the family owns a business then it is important to layout ownership of that business after the parent passes away.
If these plans aren’t written out then it is sure to lead to chaos and fighting over inherited assets rather than focusing on the memory of a loved one. The parent should also avoid trying to divide an asset that isn’t divisible. Doing that will only lead to further conflict and resentment within the family.
Determine an Executor
Having everything on paper when it comes to inherited property is a great start, but it is also important to choose an executor of the will. You’ll need to be named in the will if you’re going to act as the executor of the will and handle dividing the assets amongst the siblings.
The executor has the legal prerogative to ensure that the proper assets go to the designated people as part of their inheritance from the person who has passed away.
Take the Will to County Office or City Hall
Once you’ve been named the executor of the will, the next step that you should take when figuring out how to divide inherited property between siblings is to go to the county office or the city hall and talk to the people that are in charge of the estate disbursements in your area.
If they determine that the will is a valid will then they will proceed to accept the will. That will determine that you have the legal power to move forward with dividing the assets named in the will. If your parent set up a trust rather than a will then you can skip this step, as a trust does not require the step of going through probate.
Open a Bank Account
After you’ve put the will through probate, the next step that you should take for dividing inherited assets is to set up a bank account for your deceased parent’s estate. Any disbursements and income should go straight to this bank account as a way to keep things organized and monitor how much the estate is worth. Taking this step will make dividing the inherited assets a much easier task.
Itemize the Estate
Next, you’ll want to start itemizing the estate. You’ll gain a much better idea of all of the inherited land and assets in the estate. From there you can set out on dividing them into fair and equal portions for all of your siblings. Keep in mind that while a will or a trust is great for outlining where assets should go, not every item will get covered.
The best approach is to tally up every asset and then move towards dividing everything in a fair way for all of the siblings.
Pay Any Bills
You’ll also want to make sure that you pay any outstanding bills that the estate has on hand before dividing up the inherited assets. This means identifying and paying back any money owed to lenders or service providers. These payments will come out of the property of the deceased.
Start Contacting the Heirs
After you’ve paid any outstanding bills on the behalf of the deceased, you can start dividing up the remaining assets. You’ll start contacting the heirs to let them know what inherited assets they should expect to gain.
It is a wise move to get account information from each of the heirs for a quick and easy transfer of these assets to their accounts. From there, you can transfer these inherited assets directly to them with little effort.
Now You Know How to Divide Inherited Property Between Siblings
Learning how to divide inherited property between siblings is a tricky balance. Inherited property is an area where resentment and conflict can grow quickly. Make sure that you’re getting everything written out on paper when it comes to inherited assets and that you’re setting up a bank account for the estate. You should also pay any debts owed before you divide inherited property between siblings.
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