How to provide for your adult children in your Will
Paul Brennan is the principal of Brennans Solicitors, a law firm located on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia, where he practices with his wife, Diane in the areas of business law, litigation, property and wills/estates.
Over the years, by working in various countries, he noticed how similar the law can be. He set out to explain the law in a simple and often humorous way.
When elderly people make wills, I encourage a frank discussion about their children to see if there are any particular problems. Some people avoid the subject and say that they have normal children, which I suspect means that they have been traumatized by the experience and cannot speak about it.
Adult children seem to range from “competent and never call”, to attentive, to “having trouble sitting the right way round on a toilet seat”. Some have already received more money than the other children, there are spendthrifts married to unreliable spouses, drunken womanizing sons etc.
I usually advise against “ruling from the grave” unless there are medical reasons or there is a really serious issue. I feel it is better to spend it before you go (an increasingly popular option) or to divide it between the children equally and let them get on with it.
Extract from "A LEGAL GUIDE TO DYING-baby boomer edition."
© Paul Brennan 2008. All Rights Reserved.