Most people understand the need to have an estate plan that covers their major assets, such as real estate and vehicles. However, items that are more likely to cause issues between your relatives are often left out of estate plans.
For an ordinary estate, it is not the major, valuable property that is most likely to cause problems between relatives. Far more acrimony is caused by what happens to the little things, such as jewelry, collectibles, and even baseball cards.
It is the little items that often have the most sentimental value for relatives.
Who gets what of these sentimental items can cause major fights in the family and cause hurt feelings that last for decades.
Recently, The Gazette wrote about this issue in an article titled "Don't forget personal property in estate planning."
You can and should make distribution of personal property a part of your estate plan.
You do not have to include everything you own down to the last piece of silverware. However, you should include any items that might have sentimental value to your heirs.
For example, if you suspect that two of your children might want to have your record collection, then make who gets which records part of your estate plan.
Do not leave it up to the children to decide unless you want them to fight about it.
Contact an estate planning attorney to help plan this important part of your estate.
Reference: The Gazette (June 9, 2015) "Don't forget personal property in estate planning”
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