Some people wonder if they have to include their children in their will. Every family is different, and everyone has a different relationship with their children, so it is important to accommodate for that when it comes to estate planning. To learn more about writing your will, contact an experienced estate planning attorney.

Do I Have to Include My Children in my Will?

No. When it comes to your estate, you can allocate your assets how you please. There are lots of reasons one may want to leave a child out of their will. But, it is not enough to simply exclude your child while writing your will. If you leave your child out of the will without mentioning it, your child may be able to contest the will, claiming you simply forgot to include them. Instead, it is important to write that you are not including them, and it may be helpful to give a reason for the exclusion, as this will make it harder to contest. It is important to retain the help of a skilled estate planning attorney to ensure that your wishes are carried out properly.

If your child is underage or has special needs, you will need to make accommodations to continue caring for them.

Reasons to Leave Your Child out of the Will

There are many reasons a parent may leave their child out of their will. Some of these reasons include:

  • Having a large estate
    • You worry about allowing your children to live off of their inheritance
  • A child with an addiction or impulse control
    • You worry that they will spend all of the money and/or fuel a dangerous habit
  • You are no longer in contact

In any of these cases, you can still leave your child money. You may want to consider setting up a trust for your child instead. Reach out to an estate planning attorney to learn more about the different types of trusts.

How Do I Modify My Will?

If you included your child in your will and now wish to write them out, or you have excluded your child and would like to add them in, you are able to do so. In order to do this, you should reach out to your estate planning attorney to modify your will.

If you wish to draft a will, have any questions about including your children in your will, or questions about estate planning in general, contact our firm for more information.

Contact The Lauterbach Law Firm

Drafting a will is an important step towards a comprehensive estate plan. When considering this essential step, it is important to discuss your situation with an attorney. The Lauterbach Law Firm provides effective and experienced legal services for clients in Rockland County, Westchester County, and the Lower Hudson Valley. If you are interested in scheduling a consultation with an experienced law firm, contact The Lauterbach Law Firm today.