“Mom always liked you best” was Tommy Smothers’ signature line on the old Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. But it’s not funny when ill feelings arise in real life over the distribution and settlement of a loved one’s estate. Here are some ways to save your family from the pain of conflicts over your estate and pass your wealth to them as smoothly, tax efficiently and quickly as possible.


Make Lifetime Gifts

Making gifts during your lifetime can help ensure your property goes to the person or charitable organization you want. It also gives you an opportunity to see the individual recipients enjoying that cash or property and to mentor them in managing it. If you make a significant gift to charity, you could use life insurance benefits to replace the value of that donation in your estate. This might avoid hard feelings among family members, as well as alleviate concerns you have about leaving sufficient assets to them.

Equalize Inheritances

Life insurance can also be used to equalize inheritances and avoid family conflict in other ways. Let’s say you plan to leave an asset that makes up a large portion of your estate, such as your home or business, to one of your two children. To even things out, simply name your other child as the primary beneficiary of a life insurance policy equal to the value of the asset passing to the first child.

Remember that life insurance proceeds are generally payable relatively quickly and income-tax free, which can provide much needed cash to settle the estate’s bills.

Address Personal Property Separately

Personal property can be a source of family conflict. Talk with your estate planning attorney about how you can leave instructions and make specific bequests in your will as to who should inherit your cherished personal items.

Schedule Regular Reviews

Because situations change, you’ll want to meet with your financial professional and estate planning attorney periodically to make sure your estate provisions and life insurance coverage are still appropriate for pursuing your goals.

Copyrighted property of Newkirk Products, Inc. Symmetry has been granted permission to reproduce a portion of this publication through our license agreement with Newkirk. Symmetry Partners, LLC does not provide tax or legal advice and nothing either stated or implied here should be inferred as providing such advice. The information is provided for educational purposes only.

Symmetry Partners, LLC is an investment advisory firm registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Symmetry Partners LLC), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this newsletter will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful. Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results. As with any investment philosophy there is a possibility of profitability as well as loss.

 Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC, and investment advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisor. Both are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Cambridge Investment Research Group, Inc. Six8 Advisors LLC and Cambridge are not affiliated.