A Primer on Inheritance Disputes

A parent getting legal advice on disinheritance from a family law attorney

Sometimes, you may have good reason to disinherit a child, spouse, or grandchild. It can be for any reason. For instance, if you have given your child a substantial amount of assets, you can disinherit them.

If you feel like your parent has unjustly disinherited you, this guide explains what disinheritance is and on what grounds it’s done. Our family estate law attorney in Queens can help you with all nuances of disinheritance and estate planning.

What and Why of Disinheritance

Disinheritance is when an heir receives nothing from a loved one’s estate. The heir may or may not have received a gift from their parent or spouse before the disinheritance.

There could be many well-intentioned reasons for disinheritance. One of the common examples is leaving someone out of the will because they’ve previously received a substantial gift. If you received so much from your parent in their lifetime, they might leave the rest of the estate to other children to balance the inheritance.

On What Grounds Can A Person Disinherit Someone?

A person with full mental capacity and a sound body can choose to disinherit someone for any or no reason at all. However, some states have forced inheritance law prohibiting a person from completely disinheriting a spouse or child from their trust fund or will.

An heir can also recover what they believe to be their rightful inheritance with legal help.

Below are some of the reasons to disinherit someone:

Inheritance Distribution in Past

If your parent or spouse has given a substantial inheritance to you in their lifetime, it’s common for them to disinherit you. The rationale behind this disinheritance is to balance out the estate plan among the rest of the heirs.

Conflict of Interest

It’s common for a parent to disinherit children over a lack of agreement on their lifestyle choices. This conflict of interest is one of the common grounds on which your parent may leave you out of their trust fund or will.

Lack of Relationship

If you don’t have an ongoing relationship with your parents, they might disinherit you from their estate. In many cases, the parent may also disinherit their child under duress or the undue influence of a caregiver or step-parent.


Ex-spouses can disinherit each other legally upon divorce. It’s common for them to leave their ex-spouse out of their respective trusts and wills.

A couple rendering family law services

Talk to an experienced Litigation lawyer Brooklyn for estate planning and disinheritance. Ledwidge & Associates, P.C.provides strong advocacy and guidance to our clients looking for legal advice on estate planning Manhattan, setting up a trust, will drafting, and more. Schedule an appointment today!

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A Primer on Inheritance Disputes

Ledwidge & Associates

Ledwidge & Associates, P.C. in New York City has years of experience helping clients create estate plans that fit their needs. We have the experience and resources to handle your critical legal matters with the utmost care and attention to detail.
A Primer on Inheritance Disputes

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