When planning your estate, you may take measures to protect the assets you’ve worked hard to obtain. From the home you purchased to your bank accounts, it’s necessary to protect these assets with the help of a Washtenaw County estate planning attorney to support your loved ones after your passing. However, you may have family heirlooms in your possession that you aren’t sure how to handle. If this is the case, you’ll want to include these assets in your plan to pass them down to others in your family. Keep reading to learn more about this process and what steps you can take to ensure your wishes are met.
What Are Traditional Heirlooms?
Generally, heirlooms are any item passed down from generation to generation. They do not necessarily have significant monetary value, though many vintage objects are worth considerable money. However, it’s essential to understand that these items carry great sentimental value, thus making them priceless to many.
The most common heirloom in many families is jewelry. It’s very likely that you’ve heard someone mention the accessory they’re wearing belonged to their great-great-great-grandmother. Whether it’s a wedding ring passed down through generations or a watch with your grandfather’s initials, these items can help families feel connected.
Other typical heirlooms include furniture. For example, you may have an armoire, grandfather clock, or dining set that you inherited from your grandparent who inherited it from their grandparent. Heirlooms are a great way to help families feel connected to those they may have never met, as these items come with a story and plenty of character.
What Measures Can I Take When Estate Planning to Protect These Items?
When estate planning, it’s critical to carefully consider what family member you want to receive each heirloom. For example, if your granddaughter loves to bake, you may want to give her the secret family recipe for chocolate chip cookies. Once you’ve decided who will receive what in your estate, you’ll want to make a list of beneficiaries and the heirlooms you plan to leave them.
Next, you’ll want to ensure you appoint a neutral, trustworthy person to serve as the executor of your estate. This is important as they will act as the primary overseer for the distribution of your assets.
Finally, you may want to consider adding a no-contest clause to your estate plan. Essentially, if someone contests the will, they relinquish their right to collect their inheritance. As such, this clause dissuades beneficiaries from contesting the terms in the will simply because they are unhappy that they did not receive a specific asset or heirloom.
Planning for the future can be scary and anxiety-inducing. As such, it’s necessary to contact an experienced attorney from Collis, Griffor & Hendra to help provide the peace of mind you need to ensure your assets are protected. Reach out to our firm today to discuss the details of your case with a member of our dedicated legal team.