• December 8, 2022

‘I’m getting the short end of the stick’: My parents want to split their estate with their grandkids — but I don’t have kids

Dear Quentin,

My mother has stated that when she and my father die, she would like my three siblings and I to share inheritance in four equal ways. She has also stated that they want the grandchildren to have something too. I am single and childless, as I would like to stay.

At this point in time, all of my siblings have descendants of a total of seven grandchildren, and more are being planned. It seems more fair to me to divide the inheritance in four directions and then to state in the will that each parent / sibling gives an amount that my mother and father wish each grandchild.

My mother says she would rather give each grandchild their amount and then split the rest between her four children. It seems like I get the short end of the bar with every new grandchild. Do I split hair / heirs or am I right?

Yes, I understand that my parents will have the final say in their own affairs and will ultimately respect their wishes. It’s just another example of a single person being expected to give up more while everyone else is taking more – these are ideals I’ve struggled with all my life.

Single daughter

You can email The Moneyist at [email protected] with any financial and ethical issues related to coronavirus and follow Quentin Fottrell on Tweet.

Dear single,

I agree with your opinion: yes, it is the ultimate single supplement for childless children of parents who love their grandchildren and want to give them a sizeable portion of their estate as a gift. And yes, it’s your money and you can cry if you want. It’s a tough place: watching your siblings have children while knowing your own legacy is shrinking with every gender reveal party.

So what can you do Don’t tell your parents what you think they should do. That can only reinforce their determination. Instead, tell them how you feel: As a single daughter with no children, you feel less seen and less important as your estate is split multiple times and your inheritance is shrinking. (Note: it is not your inheritance that is shared as it is only yours when it is in your bank account.)

There are many ways that grandparents can invest in the future of their grandchildren, including with 529 accounts so they can save up for college. You can donate 529 accounts annually, with the maximum amount that you can donate by state. They can also give a certain amount to their children in the course of their lives to help with a down payment for a house, a new car or further education.

The good news is that you now have that information. Proceed like splitting your parents’ estate into ten pieces, like a birthday cake at a party with too many guests. That way, you don’t have to rely on a larger legacy and you can work hard and save for retirement.

There’s one thing even tastier than a big slice of birthday cake covered in rainbow sprinkles and that is financial independence.

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More from Quentin Fottrell:

“I just don’t trust my sister”: How do I give money to my nieces without their mother having access to it?
We’re getting married and having a baby on the way. My wife offered to pay off my $ 10,000 student debt and $ 7,500 car loan
I have three children. I left my house to my most responsible son. Now he’s blocked my calls
My brother-in-law died, leaving his house in a mess. His landlord wants me to repaint and replace the carpet. What should we do?



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