Reasonable intentions can still lead someone who is excluded or is a minor beneficiary in your estate to argue that you were unduly influenced by an outside party. Since you won’t be around to clarify your intentions, it is important to think about undue influence as you are creating your estate planning documents. These tips below will help you to ensure that you present a solid argument about the intentions behind creating your estate documents.
Even if you do take steps towards reducing such a claim, this does not mean your estate is completely protected against undue influence allegations. However, the work that you put into this in advance will decrease the chances of that undue influence claim being successful.
Avoiding a claim of undue influence requires:
- Always keeping undue influence at the top of your mind.
- Resisting involvement in a loved one’s estate planning unless it is absolutely necessary that you play this role. Resist involving yourself in the estate planning process if you are a parent’s primary caretaker and a parent plans to leave everything to you. Siblings could easily argue that your parents were unduly influenced by you.
- Make your wishes clear. Your estate plan should say exactly what you want right now. In the event that you become mentally infirm or incapacitated, however, you could become a victim of undue influence from an outside party. It is important to make your estate planning attorney aware of your wishes and the reason for them in advance.
Schedule a consultation with a trusted estate planning lawyer to craft your documents now. Our Michigan law office remains open for estate planning needs.