Should I give more money to a family member?

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jessikaur
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Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by jessikaur » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am

I am a doctor. I make much more money than my little sister. I'm 37, she is 33.
So for five years I took care of my father financially, emotionally etc. without the help of either of my sisters. The total cost if it's just dollar for dollar is about 60K, but if I think of lost of rental income (he stayed in my condo that I normally rent out) it comes to about 80K

Anyway, when he died, he left me everything, (except one other policy that he placed in my little sister's name) and a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.


So for complicated reasons, (guilt over his death, grieving etc) I didn't want any of the money that he left at the time that he passed away, plus, I was working multiple jobs, and in that respect, I was making enough money. So I wanted to give it to my little sister to help her with buying a house, for her wedding, and to help her go back to school, goals that I thought my dad would've appreciated.


Anyway, so I gave her 1/3 of the total money, I gave my older sister her equal share, according to the will, and I was not planning on taking anything.

In that time period, my younger sister, quit her job, moved into a mansion, and took two international trips to expensive countries (spain and new zealand, also she was taking guitar and piano lessons) she also applied to go to grad school.


At this point, I was working a minimum of three jobs, and I was miserable at the rest of them, and I also thought she was behaving a bit irresponsibly, since I would work very hard and at the end of the month send her my excess cash to help her. So, basically, at that point I told her I could no longer support her. Lets just say she has been very upset and has carried on about it for over two years.

Here are the numbers. the will left me 125K, I gave little sister 42K, gave older sister 14K, and the rest is 69K

I quit one my multiple jobs, so my income is a lot less. and 69K is about what I spent to take care of my dad. i.e. reimbursing myself, with really not taking anything additional.

My little sister is upset because she says she has counted on that money (the 69K) and that she considered it a financial commitment that I am backing out of. I did in fact tell her that I had wanted to give it to her to help her, but I didn't think it was an obligation, which is what she considers it, she thinks that since I make more, it is much easier for my to give away money (hence why neither one of them helped me financially with my dad).

Now, she is back in school, and is upset because she has to take loans or get scholarships or get a job, and she didn't expect to have to do that based upon the money that I promised her. (I want to add, that I had to take loans for med school, and worked through it pretty continuously) and she's going through a hard time at school because the course material is emotionally very taxing for her (she went back to psych grad school) we had a difficult childhood, so I understand what she's talking about.


I'm just not sure what I should do.. should I just give her the money? I felt like last time I did it(with the 42K, which she could easily have used to pay for gradschool), she behaved somewhat irresponsibly) her argument is that, if i give her money, it's hers to do whatever she wants to do with, and she didn't like me being so involved in her decisions. addtionally, she has literally ignored me since nov 2017, and the few times I did reach out, she said some horrible things about me, as if I were the worst person on the planet because I backed out of "my financial commitment"...


If someone gave me 42K for absolutely no reason other than they wanted to help me, I would probably thank them. But she feels she doesn't have to thank me because she's currently struggling financially and it's my fault because I won't just give her the other 69K.

What should I do?

my current situation, still have student loans, a car payment, a mortgage, i am contributing max to my accounts (108K per year). since I no longer have to pay her every month, I have been able to quit one of my jobs that was making my super miserable. and I'm down to basically just one job. I'm thinking of getting second full time job so I can meet all of my financial commitments and give her the money, but I'm not sure this is the right thing...

Any help would be appreciated.

FoolMeOnce
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by FoolMeOnce » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:07 am

Send her this post (minus the part where you say how much you save each year). I wouldn't take on a second job to support a financially irresponsible and ungrateful sibling. Depending on how much you need this extra money, perhaps split it in some way and use her portion to directly pay down student loans? What does your older sister think of the situation?

bubbadog
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by bubbadog » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:08 am

Why did your older sister get 14K and your younger sister 42k?

Was it your intention to divide his assets equally between the three of you?

miamivice
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by miamivice » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:14 am

I am confused. You said your father's direction was to reimburse yourself for your expenses and then split everything 1/3 between the three of you.

My understanding of the role of executors is to execute the instructions left by the person who has died. I am not sure that it is your place to change the deceased instructions.

It seems to me that you should do exactly as he stated. Reimburse yourself and then split everything else 1/3 1/3 1/3. Then, what you choose to do with the money you have is up to you. You can give it to little sister, big sister, charity, or whatever.

barnaclebob
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by barnaclebob » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:20 am

No matter what you do your little sister will hate you. Keep the rest of the money.

JoinToday
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by JoinToday » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:23 am

1. Lack of gratitude is the worst thing -- a person cannot be happy without gratitude.

2. Welfare is like crack -- for many (most?) people, a dependence on it is almost impossible to break.

I wouldn't be very sympathetic to a sibling that was ungrateful, especially one in their 30's. Their trajectory in life is set at that point.
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by goblue100 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:23 am

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am

Anyway, when he died, he left me everything, (except one other policy that he placed in my little sister's name) and a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.


So for complicated reasons, (guilt over his death, grieving etc) I didn't want any of the money that he left at the time that he passed away, plus, I was working multiple jobs, and in that respect, I was making enough money. So I wanted to give it to my little sister to help her with buying a house, for her wedding, and to help her go back to school, goals that I thought my dad would've appreciated.


Anyway, so I gave her 1/3 of the total money, I gave my older sister her equal share, according to the will, and I was not planning on taking anything.

Here are the numbers. the will left me 125K, I gave little sister 42K, gave older sister 14K, and the rest is 69K

I quit one my multiple jobs, so my income is a lot less. and 69K is about what I spent to take care of my dad. i.e. reimbursing myself, with really not taking anything additional.

I think if you wanted to be generous, it should have been 125K/3 = $41,666. If you wanted to be reimbursed, then 125K-80K = 45K / 3 = 15K.
Big sister is the one with a complaint. This doesn't need to be complicated. Just fulfill the terms of the will, and close the estate. I'll agree with little sister about one thing, the money is hers and you should quit trying to control how she spends it. But I don't see where she should expect anything beyond what she has received.
Financial planners are savers. They want us to be 95 percent confident we can finance a 30-year retirement even though there is an 82 percent probability of being dead by then. - Scott Burns

barnaclebob
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by barnaclebob » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:25 am

bubbadog wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:08 am
Why did your older sister get 14K and your younger sister 42k?

Was it your intention to divide his assets equally between the three of you?
It sounds like the big and little sisters were due 14k according to the will which they both got. (125k-80k)/3 =~14k. Then the OP decided to gift 28k of his own money to the little sister with mental plans to give the rest of the 69k to his little sister but is having second thoughts. The fact that he expressed his intentions to little sister is complicating the matter emotionally.

ohai
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by ohai » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:29 am

You are a doctor working 3 jobs? Your sister moved into a mansion after inheriting $42k?

Ok anyway, assuming this is all true, you should not feel compelled to support an irresponsible person who will just leech off you for life. At the max, give her a small amount that you can justify and say that's it. The up front payment might help convince them to agree to future terms.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:29 am

Your sister needs a new Lexus LS. How can you hold that money back when she's already picked out the color? Oh, the horrors. You know, there are kids in Africa who have no food at all......eat your beans.
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ponyboy
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by ponyboy » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:33 am

Something doesnt seem right about OP's story. I dont feel as if we're getting the entire story...or some of the story is fabricated. Either way...good luck to you OP and whatever decision you make.

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Ketawa
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Ketawa » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:37 am

If you want to take the stance that you executed your father's will properly, you effectively gave your younger sister $28K and may have needed to file Form 709 with your tax return depending on whether you were married or the year of the gift.

I would tell the younger sister that I already fulfilled the terms of the will and gave you $28K of what was rightfully mine, plus whatever else you sent her, and wouldn't even think about giving her anything else. I'd apologize for judging her use of the money as that's none of your business once it's hers and for my lack of clarification about the remaining funds. But that's just me.
Last edited by Ketawa on Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

chevca
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by chevca » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:38 am

I don't think any of us can answer as to what you should do. It comes down to a very personal decision.

If you were to give some money to your sis, would it improve the relationship between you two? Is that more important to you than money?

I will say that working multiple jobs to save $108k/year and pay your sis (formerly) while carrying your own debt doesn't make much sense to me. You save more than many folks in the US make in a year. That's awesome. But, maybe cut back on the saving rate some so you can take care of some debt and don't have to work yourself to the point of misery. My take on it any, but it seems there are other options than you're looking at.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by DesertDiva » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:40 am

No good deed goes unpunished. Stop the handouts, otherwise the requests will never end. Adulting isn’t easy, but we all need to do it.

Thegame14
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Thegame14 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:41 am

tell her to send you a tuition bill and you will pay it. If you want to "give" her the money, I would make sure it went to pay directly for school and not nonsense like international vacations or luxuries. If you don't want to give her the money, tell her I already gave you more than enough and you need to stop the "Deserve" entitlement mentality and grow up...

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by delamer » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:41 am

If you had a verbal commitment to give your younger sister a certain amount of money (or pay her tuition), then you should honor it.

If you had a vaguer commitment to help her out, then you should
1) give her a check for $X tomorrow and tell her that is it.
2) or tell her you’ve set aside $X for a house downpayment and you aren’t giving her anything more until then
3) or give her nothing more.

What isn’t clear from your post is what help your older sister received from your father financially. I can think of a couple families where younger kids were disadvantaged because the family was more affluent when the older kids were going through college. (In one case, older siblings got to go to out-of-state public colleges while the youngest ended up commuting to an instate school during the Great Recession.)

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by mhadden1 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:42 am

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am

Anyway, when he died, he left me everything, (except one other policy that he placed in my little sister's name) and a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.

...........

Here are the numbers. the will left me 125K, I gave little sister 42K, gave older sister 14K, and the rest is 69K
Your post is too complicated for me to have confidence that I parsed it correctly. But, I think the relevant parts are the quoted parts.

It appears that you were left 125k and so that money is legally yours.

Consequently, your father asked in the will for you to take some actions, based on your discretion, with your 125k. IANAL and I don't know if you are legally required to take those actions. I personally would feel obligated to do so, as best I could. Sadly, no matter how fair you make your self-reimbursement and distributions, it may be too late for good feelings to result. In particular, you already gave one sister more. Of course, it's your money and you can give it away as you please. You can mentally account as you please, and apportion any part to inheritance and any part to gifting or whatever you want. If you choose to explain things to your sisters, simpler actions will be easier to explain.

I suggest that, going forward, you try hard to not be involved in your sibling's financial lives. And, I read a lot of pain in your post - I would suggest seeking the help of a kind counselor, friend, etc. in real life.
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JoeRetire
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by JoeRetire » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:49 am

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am
Anyway, when he died, he left me everything, (except one other policy that he placed in my little sister's name) and a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.
Clearly, you should have done just what the will said. That's what a will is for.
I gave her 1/3 of the total money, I gave my older sister her equal share, according to the will, and I was not planning on taking anything.
And is this what you told your sisters at the time? What did you tell them you would do with the 69k, since you weren't planning on taking anything?
My little sister is upset because she says she has counted on that money (the 69K) and that she considered it a financial commitment that I am backing out of.
Clearly she is right.
It appears that you committed to not taking anything, and you changed your mind.
I'm just not sure what I should do.. should I just give her the money?
That's the problem with giving people money. You must give it with no strings attached. You can't promise to give it to someone with the unstated assumption of "but I'll reneg on my promise if I don't approve of something you do". That's no gift.

Give her the money, or don't give her the money and live with the fallout.

In the future, if you must execute a will, don't freelance.
Don't be a lemming.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by PVW » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:52 am

There is an obvious, logical answer to your question and from the tone of your post, you know exactly what it is. The problem you have and what we can't help with is the emotional relationship you have with your sister.

It sounds like your sister has a much different relationship with money than you do. From her perspective, you have money, she needs money, and the only reason you are not given her money is that you are selfish. It's unlikely that you can change this perspective, you can only change your participation in the fantasy. At some point you have to stand up and say no.

psteinx
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by psteinx » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:54 am

As others have stated, it's a bit complicated, and there's reason to suspect that the story as relayed is not 100% complete.

I am not a lawyer, but a valid written will (as apparently existed) should govern the direct inheritance. It should be settled promptly. It's not clear how much here was formally specified in a will, and how much was informal (i.e. father: "the will says this, but I'd like you to do this other thing"). I think most folks have, rightfully, a fairly strong desire to follow the stated desire of the decedent, even if that's not formally in a will or legally enforceable.

OP sounds, frankly, like she's rolling in money. A doctor working 3 jobs, stashing $108K/year into retirement accounts (apparently), and perhaps saving additional money besides. Yes, OP is working hard, and likely had to work hard (med school) to get there. But an extra few $10s of Ks to assist one or both sister, or to fulfill wishes of father, or even simply for family harmony, is not likely to be a financial disaster for OP.

OP has perhaps not communicated well with the main sister in question.

Sister has perhaps been immature, selfish, and/or perhaps a bit lazy. Still, she is OP's younger sister, and is apparently trying to get her life on track. I would err on the side of being supportive (to a reasonable extent).

As a previous poster suggested, this might be a case where OP should consult a wise friend or counselor in real life.
Last edited by psteinx on Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:02 pm, edited 2 times in total.

g2morrow
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by g2morrow » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:54 am

miamivice wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:14 am
I am confused. You said your father's direction was to reimburse yourself for your expenses and then split everything 1/3 between the three of you.

My understanding of the role of executors is to execute the instructions left by the person who has died. I am not sure that it is your place to change the deceased instructions.

It seems to me that you should do exactly as he stated. Reimburse yourself and then split everything else 1/3 1/3 1/3. Then, what you choose to do with the money you have is up to you. You can give it to little sister, big sister, charity, or whatever.
+1 - looks like you made a mess for yourself

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jessikaur
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by jessikaur » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:56 am

barnaclebob wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:25 am
bubbadog wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:08 am
Why did your older sister get 14K and your younger sister 42k?

Was it your intention to divide his assets equally between the three of you?
It sounds like the big and little sisters were due 14k according to the will which they both got. (125k-80k)/3 =~14k. Then the OP decided to gift 28k of his own money to the little sister with mental plans to give the rest of the 69k to his little sister but is having second thoughts. The fact that he expressed his intentions to little sister is complicating the matter emotionally.
totally!!! i should've just followed the will. and then given her extra if I wanted to (which I did) and she would consider it as given from me, and NOT that she was owed it. they are all aware of his will. but apparently, that doesn't matter!!

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jessikaur
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by jessikaur » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:58 am

ohai wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:29 am
You are a doctor working 3 jobs? Your sister moved into a mansion after inheriting $42k?

Ok anyway, assuming this is all true, you should not feel compelled to support an irresponsible person who will just leech off you for life. At the max, give her a small amount that you can justify and say that's it. The up front payment might help convince them to agree to future terms.
Lol. I know it sounds unbelievable. yes, I am a workaholic. I did it because I could. but once it became too much, I wanted to slow down.
the mansion is true, except, she's just renting part of it. it's a high cost of living area, and basically her rent is the amount of my mortgage, since we live in florida.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by birdog » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:58 am

miamivice wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:14 am
I am confused. You said your father's direction was to reimburse yourself for your expenses and then split everything 1/3 between the three of you.

My understanding of the role of executors is to execute the instructions left by the person who has died. I am not sure that it is your place to change the deceased instructions.

It seems to me that you should do exactly as he stated. Reimburse yourself and then split everything else 1/3 1/3 1/3. Then, what you choose to do with the money you have is up to you. You can give it to little sister, big sister, charity, or whatever.
This. In my opinion, you messed up when you deviated from your father's instructions. You promised her more than you're now willing to giver her because you don't like how she spent the money. Sad part is, this was all avoidable if you'd just done what you were supposed to do. I realize that your intentions were good, however. But as stated, no good deed goes unpunished. What you do now (give her the promised money or not) is up to you. I can see a case for either option. But I personally think you should give her the money since you did tell her that you would. You didn't tell her "I'll give you the money if I agree with your spending choices" did you? That's just my opinion and I'm giving it because you asked. Probably a sit down with her is warranted to save the relationship. Tell her your thoughts and tell her you see her point and try to come to an understanding of some sort even if you both don't agree 100%. Less communication is almost guaranteed to make the situation worse, not better. I wish you the best.
Last edited by birdog on Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:13 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Jags4186
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:01 pm

This is so bizarre. I’m sorry OP but it amazes me that otherwise intelligent people can do such unintelligent things.

Time to pull the bandaid off and reset relationship expectations. If that ends the relationship so be it unless you are perfectly fine supporting your entire extended family.

FWIW my sister and brother in law make 10x what myself and my wife make and live in a home that is 4x the price of my home. They go on vacations that cost 5-10x what mine cost. We exchange circa $50 gifts at Christmas.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by willthrill81 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm

Nothing will make your family members hate you like giving them money.

Let the OP's story be a lesson to all who read it.
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by mmmodem » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm

Let me see how it is from your sisters side.

My father just passed away. I live in an undesirable area. I want to go to graduate school to get a better job. I also want to get married but we haven't saved enough for a wedding or a honeymoon. My older always more responsible sister tells me she doesn't want father's inheritance. She's going to give me her portion instead.

With this money, I figure I can probably buy a better home and go on a real honeymoon. Spain is a very inexpensive country. I'll throw in NZ as well since I have a little leftover. When I get back and go to school my older sister tells me, she isn't going to give me the rest of the money. She doesn't like how I spent the money. I know dad didn't leave this money to me but older sister promised it to me and is now reneging. I've already bought the home, had the wedding, and went on the vacation. If I had known she wouldn't give me the rest of the money, I wouldn't have bought the home or gone on vacation. I am an adult I don't need someone to tell me how to spend my money. If there were stipulations on how to spend the money she should've told me up front.


Yeah, I would be upset at you too. I think the only way I would accept you going back on your word is to understand that you have your own financial commitments, that maybe you were a little too hasty in giving it away. However, if you are not giving the money just because you don't like the way your little sister is spending it. That's extremely hard to get over.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by willthrill81 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:14 pm

mmmodem wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm
Yeah, I would be upset at you too. I think the only way I would accept you going back on your word is to understand that you have your own financial commitments, that maybe you were a little too hasty in giving it away. However, if you are not giving the money just because you don't like the way your little sister is spending it. That's extremely hard to get over.
Even if that is true, and it very well may be, the OP's sister should not have spent money she didn't yet have.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by PVW » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:14 pm

mmmodem wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm
Let me see how it is from your sisters side.

My father just passed away. I live in an undesirable area. I want to go to graduate school to get a better job. I also want to get married but we haven't saved enough for a wedding or a honeymoon. My older always more responsible sister tells me she doesn't want father's inheritance. She's going to give me her portion instead.

With this money, I figure I can probably buy a better home and go on a real honeymoon. Spain is a very inexpensive country. I'll throw in NZ as well since I have a little leftover. When I get back and go to school my older sister tells me, she isn't going to give me the rest of the money. She doesn't like how I spent the money. I know dad didn't leave this money to me but older sister promised it to me and is now reneging. I've already bought the home, had the wedding, and went on the vacation. If I had known she wouldn't give me the rest of the money, I wouldn't have bought the home or gone on vacation. I am an adult I don't need someone to tell me how to spend my money. If there were stipulations on how to spend the money she should've told me up front.


Yeah, I would be upset at you too. I think the only way I would accept you going back on your word is to understand that you have your own financial commitments, that maybe you were a little too hasty in giving it away. However, if you are not giving the money just because you don't like the way your little sister is spending it. That's extremely hard to get over.
If little sister had come to Bogleheads for advice, we would have told her to not count on any inheritance until it is in your bank account.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by willthrill81 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:16 pm

PVW wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:14 pm
mmmodem wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm
Let me see how it is from your sisters side.

My father just passed away. I live in an undesirable area. I want to go to graduate school to get a better job. I also want to get married but we haven't saved enough for a wedding or a honeymoon. My older always more responsible sister tells me she doesn't want father's inheritance. She's going to give me her portion instead.

With this money, I figure I can probably buy a better home and go on a real honeymoon. Spain is a very inexpensive country. I'll throw in NZ as well since I have a little leftover. When I get back and go to school my older sister tells me, she isn't going to give me the rest of the money. She doesn't like how I spent the money. I know dad didn't leave this money to me but older sister promised it to me and is now reneging. I've already bought the home, had the wedding, and went on the vacation. If I had known she wouldn't give me the rest of the money, I wouldn't have bought the home or gone on vacation. I am an adult I don't need someone to tell me how to spend my money. If there were stipulations on how to spend the money she should've told me up front.


Yeah, I would be upset at you too. I think the only way I would accept you going back on your word is to understand that you have your own financial commitments, that maybe you were a little too hasty in giving it away. However, if you are not giving the money just because you don't like the way your little sister is spending it. That's extremely hard to get over.
If little sister had come to Bogleheads for advice, we would have told her to not count on any inheritance until it is in your bank account.
On a very related note, that's why we don't advise people to 'count' on ever getting an inheritance, much less spending it in advance. There are far too many unknowns, rapidly changing family dynamics not being the least of them.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:27 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:56 am
totally!!! i should've just followed the will. and then given her extra if I wanted to (which I did) and she would consider it as given from me, and NOT that she was owed it. they are all aware of his will. but apparently, that doesn't matter!!
- I took care of my father financially,..The total cost is about 60K, but if I think of lost of rental income it comes to about 80K.
- Will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.
- I didn't want any of the money that he left at the time that he passed away, I wanted to give it to my little sister
- I gave her 1/3 of the total money, I gave my older sister her equal share, and I was not planning on taking anything.
- the will left me 125K, I gave little sister 42K, gave older sister 14K, and the rest is 69K
So you went ahead and reimbursed yourself $80K, even though you "didn't want any of the money."
You give your big sister the absolute lowest amount possible ($14K).
Then intend to give your little sister her $14K share + your $14K share + your $80K reimbursement ($111K total).
But then decide to renege on the amount you promised your little sister.

Is this correct?

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by trustquestioner » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:32 pm

I’m having trouble making sense of the numbers, but I would give the sisters the money in equal shares and make clear no more handouts are forthcoming. Then, I’d stick to it no matter what sob story inevitably follows.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by greg24 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:41 pm

Whatever you do, your sister won't be happy.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:56 pm

Upon rereading everything I think I misunderstood some of the things. Seems to me you stuck your foot in your mouth. I’ve done that before. I’ve also owned up to mistakes I’ve made and followed through. That said, I haven’t stuck my foot into my mouth to the tune of $94k out of my pocket. And if I did, I would rather take whatever personal lumps are coming my way rather than part with $94k that is rightfully mine, regardless of whatever stupid thing I said.

At best I would disregard the foregone rent on the condo you let your father stay in and focus singularly on the amount you spent. So you have $125k - $60k = $65k. $65k/3 = $21,667 each. Don’t forget your executor fee if your father did not stipulate you were to serve without one.
Last edited by Jags4186 on Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by galawdawg » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:57 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am
I am a doctor. I make much more money than my little sister. I'm 37, she is 33.
So for five years I took care of my father financially, emotionally etc. without the help of either of my sisters. The total cost if it's just dollar for dollar is about 60K, but if I think of lost of rental income (he stayed in my condo that I normally rent out) it comes to about 80K

Anyway, when he died, he left me everything, (except one other policy that he placed in my little sister's name) and a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us sisters.


So for complicated reasons, (guilt over his death, grieving etc) I didn't want any of the money that he left at the time that he passed away, plus, I was working multiple jobs, and in that respect, I was making enough money. So I wanted to give it to my little sister to help her with buying a house, for her wedding, and to help her go back to school, goals that I thought my dad would've appreciated.


Anyway, so I gave her 1/3 of the total money, I gave my older sister her equal share, according to the will, and I was not planning on taking anything.

In that time period, my younger sister, quit her job, moved into a mansion, and took two international trips to expensive countries (spain and new zealand, also she was taking guitar and piano lessons) she also applied to go to grad school.


At this point, I was working a minimum of three jobs, and I was miserable at the rest of them, and I also thought she was behaving a bit irresponsibly, since I would work very hard and at the end of the month send her my excess cash to help her. So, basically, at that point I told her I could no longer support her. Lets just say she has been very upset and has carried on about it for over two years.

Here are the numbers. the will left me 125K, I gave little sister 42K, gave older sister 14K, and the rest is 69K

I quit one my multiple jobs, so my income is a lot less. and 69K is about what I spent to take care of my dad. i.e. reimbursing myself, with really not taking anything additional.

My little sister is upset because she says she has counted on that money (the 69K) and that she considered it a financial commitment that I am backing out of. I did in fact tell her that I had wanted to give it to her to help her, but I didn't think it was an obligation, which is what she considers it, she thinks that since I make more, it is much easier for my to give away money (hence why neither one of them helped me financially with my dad).

Now, she is back in school, and is upset because she has to take loans or get scholarships or get a job, and she didn't expect to have to do that based upon the money that I promised her. (I want to add, that I had to take loans for med school, and worked through it pretty continuously) and she's going through a hard time at school because the course material is emotionally very taxing for her (she went back to psych grad school) we had a difficult childhood, so I understand what she's talking about.


I'm just not sure what I should do.. should I just give her the money? I felt like last time I did it(with the 42K, which she could easily have used to pay for gradschool), she behaved somewhat irresponsibly) her argument is that, if i give her money, it's hers to do whatever she wants to do with, and she didn't like me being so involved in her decisions. addtionally, she has literally ignored me since nov 2017, and the few times I did reach out, she said some horrible things about me, as if I were the worst person on the planet because I backed out of "my financial commitment"...


If someone gave me 42K for absolutely no reason other than they wanted to help me, I would probably thank them. But she feels she doesn't have to thank me because she's currently struggling financially and it's my fault because I won't just give her the other 69K.

What should I do?

my current situation, still have student loans, a car payment, a mortgage, i am contributing max to my accounts (108K per year). since I no longer have to pay her every month, I have been able to quit one of my jobs that was making my super miserable. and I'm down to basically just one job. I'm thinking of getting second full time job so I can meet all of my financial commitments and give her the money, but I'm not sure this is the right thing...

Any help would be appreciated.
Were you the executor? Was the will probated?

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:07 pm

Unfortunately, it's hard to reverse course once folks are enabled and/or a codependent relationship created.
Follow the terms of the trust/will. And no more.
Possibly, not everyone will be pleased.
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by 8foot7 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:16 pm

You've burned the bridge with your little sister already; she's clearly put a price of at least 69k on your relationship. As others have said, you won't ever win with her, and she's obviously morally in the wrong.

Since you already gave her a full third of what your father left you, ignoring what he told you was yours to reimburse yourself with, I'd personally sleep fine at night moving on knowing you honored your father's wishes as best you thought. You may have told her you intended to give her money but that's not the same as writing a check and you already gave her more than you were obligated to. Her claim on the 69k remaining is laughable and non-existent. I don't know what cash amount would make up for sticking my foot in my mouth but it'd be a lot closer to a few thousand than 69k, and if I've given her significant extra cash along the way I'd probably err toward zero.

I'd be somewhat more sympathetic to big sister coming forward and wanting another 28k from you, since it seems like she's the one who really got screwed in all of this; in fact, I'd probably go ahead and give her that now to clear things up. That way everyone's gotten a third of what was left and if big sister doesn't want it, she can give it to little sis. Then everyone's even on the inheritance, although you're still in the hole by whatever you spent on your dad.

But you really should have shut your mouth and done what the will said.
Last edited by 8foot7 on Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by trytrying » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:20 pm

Why didn't you follow your fathers wishes, reimburse yourself, then split the rest evenly?

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by cherijoh » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:38 pm

Thegame14 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:41 am
tell her to send you a tuition bill and you will pay it. If you want to "give" her the money, I would make sure it went to pay directly for school and not nonsense like international vacations or luxuries. If you don't want to give her the money, tell her I already gave you more than enough and you need to stop the "Deserve" entitlement mentality and grow up...
+1 on the tough love.

There is absolutely no way I would give into the emotional blackmail from your little sister. From my perspective, you have a toxic relationship that won't get any better no matter how much money you give her. So difficult as it is, I'd cut her off and hope she gains some maturity somewhere down the road. There is no way I would take a second job to support her. FYI - how much you are able to save for retirement is your business. Lots of doctors get burned out early.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by ronno2018 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:55 pm

I think you need to give a one time payment to the sister and explain you made a mistake and together you should go to a counselor to work on a plan forward for the relationship.

She needs to rely on herself to make a prosperous life. It is certainly super OK to help family members in need (alcohol and drug addictions, homelessness,etc.) but no need to increase the lifestyle of a sister or brother just because you are wealthier.

The sister is in the wrong but at the same time perhaps you should have not reimbursed yourself and should have just given the estate to the rest of the family? You did an awesome thing taking care of your father at the end of his life but your life is set and you will have so much money in the future. You likely will be one of the wealthiest people on the planet.

So patch things up now and enjoy your family relationships as best you can.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by MP173 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:06 pm

Guilt was involved with the OP.

Been there. It is common for there to be guilt after inheriting $$$ from the death of a loved one. I was taken advantage of (loan) and never paid back. Plus the person kept asking for more. I finally stopped.

I do not see why you should support your sister from your income unless there is more to the story.

If it were me I would:
1. Sit down with her and ask what she feels is fair.
2. Settle with her but make it known there will be no more money available.
3. Do not attempt to control her life.

Good luck.

Ed

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by fourkids » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:10 pm

Tell her to grow up, be responsible and start providing for herself.
Tell her you don't owe her a thing, and you don't want to talk about it again.
She needs a dose of tough love now, for her own good and future

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by deltaneutral83 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:21 pm

trytrying wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:20 pm
Why didn't you follow your fathers wishes, reimburse yourself, then split the rest evenly?
OP did exactly this, took her 80k, and split the remaining evenly as instructed. Once the money hit's OP's account, distributes the initial amounts, the will has been executed. OP THEN has gone on with the OP's money to make OTHER arrangements with OP's money which is fungible. And these arrangements are just a little bit murky,he said/she said type things at best. I would never dangle $70k over someone's head nor would I count on an inheritance until the check clears. I really can't picture myself in either situation but as to how I would hypothetically handle it(?), I'd do whatever cleared my conscience which is something like take half of the 70k that was "discussed" with little sister, halve it, and give each sister $17.5k and wash my hands of this ordeal and know the youngest one is probably out of my life. I could sleep easily with this arrangement and easily digest any subsequent fall out.

The discussion that only the OP was present for regarding the $69k with little sis is the only thing that is pertinent. The behaviors with money from little sis is pure noise. If an "agreement" was made, then further concessions are certainly on the table. Only the OP knows what she said, how she said, and how she perceives little sis interpreted it.
Last edited by deltaneutral83 on Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by vineviz » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:23 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am

my current situation, still have student loans, a car payment, a mortgage, i am contributing max to my accounts (108K per year). since I no longer have to pay her every month, I have been able to quit one of my jobs that was making my super miserable. and I'm down to basically just one job. I'm thinking of getting second full time job so I can meet all of my financial commitments and give her the money, but I'm not sure this is the right thing...
I would counsel you to find SOME way to understand that your feelings about how the sister spends her money are entirely irrelevant to the decisions you have to make. Your post provided a lot of detail about her, but the question is really about you: you said that you would do something that you now don't want to do.

I can't tell you whether you should or shouldn't follow through with doing the thing you said you'd do. I suppose it depends a lot on how much you value keeping your word, how much you value your relationship with your sister, and how much you need the money.

My opinion is that your father put you in a terrible situation by leaving all the money to you AND making you the executor. My opinion is also that you made the situation worse, both by handling the disbursements in an ambiguous manner and by making an offer to little sister that you now regret.

I'm sure that she senses your disapproval of her lifestyle, and I can easily see why she'd conclude that this disapproval is at the root of your decision to keep more money that you originally expected. Even if you don't see that as your main rationale.

You're allowed to think she spends money too extravagantly, of course, but I'd work on finding a way to see that such thoughts are extraneous to the decision you have to make. You can't control her actions, only yours.

My advice would be to sit down with her and start rebuilding some trust (use counseling or a therapist if that helps), make a sincere apology for changing your decision if you think that's warranted, and work on finding a compromise solution that leaves you both satisfied.
"Far more money has been lost by investors preparing for corrections than has been lost in corrections themselves." ~~ Peter Lynch

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:32 pm

willthrill81 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm
Nothing will make your family members hate you like giving them money.

Let the OP's story be a lesson to all who read it.
Good one!!!!
Also. . . . perhaps non family members as well. . . .
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Nestegg_User » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:39 pm

you've already said that the "little sister" had gotten proceeds from another policy**.... so already she's received more than your "older sister" {based on my reading of your original post}

if anything, the older sister is the one due anything

do you know how much that one was? If you were to envision "making it equal", it's likely that more would go to that older sister.
e.g. [ {Proceeds from common policy} less { direct costs for support}*** plus {proceeds from second policy}] divided by three..... will give an "equivalent share" of total proceeds. Didn't "lil sis" get at least that much?
You could always argue that your older sister was due additional and that that's where it should go, if anywhere...

I suspect there's a reason that the younger sister wasn't named executor.... did he give any reason for the second policy that you mentioned? I also suspect that nothing will disentangle your younger sister's idea that she is due more from anything you do.... nor help her understand that you've already done more than was suggested (even if you are now the higher earning sibling, despite your own student loans that you have to pay)

** based on the sister trying to go to grad school, that leaves out a special needs trust

*** so don't include imputed rent lost
Last edited by Nestegg_User on Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by simas » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:41 pm

yes. I do not understand what was the reason for cheating the older sister? how divide equivally means 42k to one and 14k to another?

separately, sending money over each month - what is that about? what does it have to do with will/inheritance?

if I were you I would have done the following
-thought long and hard if I am going back on my word of ' I do not need the money'

if you are taking it back, then do what will says - take 125 divide by three and give everyone what they should have had. younger sister gets nothing else, older sister gets another 28K which did not get originally

if you are keeping that word , then take 125 , divide by two , and give the differences to younger sister (62- 42) and older sister (62-14). Close the estate, close the conversation


Anything else, monthly support, is another major issue with enablement , has nothing to do with the will/estate and dealt with separately. I would stop that immediately.
Last edited by simas on Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Dottie57 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:44 pm

willthrill81 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:14 pm
mmmodem wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:09 pm
Yeah, I would be upset at you too. I think the only way I would accept you going back on your word is to understand that you have your own financial commitments, that maybe you were a little too hasty in giving it away. However, if you are not giving the money just because you don't like the way your little sister is spending it. That's extremely hard to get over.
Even if that is true, and it very well may be, the OP's sister should not have spent money she didn't yet have.
Agreed. And if someone wants to reneg on money they promised that should be ok. The money belongs to the OP.

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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Elsebet » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:48 pm

I don't envy your situation. I was given much less than my two brothers in my father's will but I appreciated what I received nonetheless and didn't make a peep about it other than mentioning it here.

If you hadn't spoken to your sister of your plans, I would say you are under no obligation to give her any more money than the will specified. However since you did promise an amount, it would probably be in your best interest to give a final payment of the promised amount (live up to your promise) but make it clear that this is the last financial help she will receive and that she is on her own financially going forward (tough love). Don't budge if she comes back for more even if it means terminating the relationship otherwise it will never ever end.
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by cherijoh » Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:52 pm

ronno2018 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:55 pm
I think you need to give a one time payment to the sister and explain you made a mistake and together you should go to a counselor to work on a plan forward for the relationship.

She needs to rely on herself to make a prosperous life. It is certainly super OK to help family members in need (alcohol and drug addictions, homelessness,etc.) but no need to increase the lifestyle of a sister or brother just because you are wealthier.

The sister is in the wrong but at the same time perhaps you should have not reimbursed yourself and should have just given the estate to the rest of the family? You did an awesome thing taking care of your father at the end of his life but your life is set and you will have so much money in the future. You likely will be one of the wealthiest people on the planet.

So patch things up now and enjoy your family relationships as best you can.
Why do you think the OP shouldn't have reimbursed herself/himself when that is what the father wanted? Your final comment actually sounds like you are trying to lay a guilt trip on the OP for being an overachiever.

This is reminiscent of the argument about leaving a smaller legacy to the most successful child to leave more for a less successful (but otherwise able-bodied) sibling. In the best of circumstances this can lead to resentment from one and entitlement in the other. It would be gracious to disclaim part of an inheritance if one person was that much better off, but in that case the other sister is the one who has the best claim on the extra money.

IMO the only mistake the OP made was making a premature decision to give substantial extra resources to the youngest sister before she could evaluate her sister's level of maturity. Which it turned out is very low for her age. Once she blew the original $14K on vacations that would have been the last money she saw from me if I were in the OP's shoes.

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