Inheritances: “Fair” does not mean “equal”
When preparing a will or a trust, many times the creator (the client) wants to treat beneficiaries equally. Take, for example, a mother or father with three chidren. “I want my estate to go in three equal shares, to each of my children. That’s the fair thing ” the client says. But “equal” is not always “fair”. And “fair” does not always mean “equal.” Consider a loving, doting child who assists the parent with everything from shopping to household chores and who shares holidays together. Contrast that child with a sibling who is distant, both geographically and on a personal basis, from parent. Is it “fair” that the doting child receive an “equal” share as the child who has no interest in the parent’s life?