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How can you prevent possible undue influence?

On Behalf of | Jul 17, 2023 | Estate Planning

When you frequently visit your aging parents in private and discuss serious matters like estate planning, you may worry about appearing as though you are exerting undue influence. This term refers to when you influence an older person by forcing or pressuring them to leave you the majority of the assets in their will.

If your parents plan to leave you a larger portion of assets and heirlooms than your siblings or other people, it may help you to protect yourself from accusations of undue influence.

Have your parents write a clarifying letter

According to the AARP, you can ask your elderly parents to write a letter of intent to clear up any issues or questions people have during probate. This letter can include an explanation of why you get a larger share of the inheritance or why you get certain items.

Your parents should include the reasoning behind the decision, such as that you took care of them in their old age or spent more money on them in the past.

Allow your parents privacy in crucial moments

When your parents visit with their attorneys or join a local club, make sure to allow them space to interact without you physically present. This can help disprove accusations of you influencing them or pressuring them.

Take notes

Writing down what you did on certain dates during the writing of the will can help protect you later on. By keeping a detailed log of your actions, you can better remember everything that happened in the event someone accuses you of undue influence.

No matter what kind of worries you have about undue influence, keeping track of details and letting your parents have private meetings is important.