Most parents want to leave all of their assets to any remaining children that they have. This is especially true if the children are young and will need to be financially cared for throughout their lives. However, as children get older and become adults themselves, it might leave some parents wondering whether they are required to equally split up their assets among their kids. The answer to that is a resounding no.
There may be many reasons why a parent has chosen not to leave money to one of their children. For instance, if the parent has cared for the child financially even through adulthood or has helped them out with college funding, they may decide that that child’s inheritance was taken up while they were still living. The long and short of it is that a person has the right to choose who they will leave their assets to and how much. It doesn’t have to be equally split up between the children for any reason.
However, it’s very important that your will specifically states what you are leaving to whom. If you want to leave nothing to one of your children, you must specifically state that so that he or she cannot claim accidental disinheritance. By being very specific in your will, you will avoid any unnecessary court challenges that could come about after your death.
If you are still close with the child in question, it makes sense to be very frank with them by letting them know why you are choosing to eliminate them from your will. The last thing you want to do is to create heartache and grief by not letting your family member know the reasoning behind your choice. However, if you have had a strained relationship with this person in life, then it likely won’t be a surprise that you are not leaving them anything in your will.