Should I give more money to a family member?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
megabad
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by megabad » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:13 pm

Agree with others, assuming estate is still open (and your comments make it seems like it is), it needs to be closed ASAP per the terms of the will. The sister's spending habits would not matter to me much until the estate situation is remedied.

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

Post by student » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:16 pm

simas wrote:
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?
OP said "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," "a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us 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," and "the will left me 125K." So OP reimbursed herself 80k. 125k-80k=45k. 45k/3=15k. So the older sister's share is 15k. Since a couple dollar amounts are "about," I assume the 15k vs 14k is due to rounding. So no. OP did not cheat the older sister. OP decided to give extra money to little sister out of her own share and from the reimbursement portion.

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

Post by student » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:23 pm

cherijoh wrote:
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.
+1. Also OP said "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." Of course, we do not know what was the precise wording. Did OP say: I am giving your extra out of my share or adding that this is because she wanted to help her with buying a house, for her wedding, and to help her go back to school. Assuming that it is the latter, then I think OP is within her right and ethics to withhold the money at this time.

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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 3:32 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:56 am
they are all aware of his will. but apparently, that doesn't matter!!
To be fair, you are aware of the will, too. Apparently you didn't think it would matter if you chose not to follow it.
Don't be a lemming.

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

Post by GoldStar » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:35 pm

You gave younger sister more than older sister - promised more to younger sister but now are planning on backing out of promise?
I am surprised either one of the two sisters is talking to you! In hindsight you should have just executed the will to the instructions - now that you've made the promise - not sure what you should do. I personally don't like to back out of commitments I make.

For those that find the OPs story interesting - there are several like it in this book (Beyond the Grave by Condon):

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LEYI4S6

Estate distribution sounds like it should be easy - but...

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

Post by researcher » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:36 pm

cherijoh wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:52 pm
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.
The key part for me is the OP explicitly stated that she "didn't want any of the money that he left."

If this were the case, she could have chosen to not reimburse herself at all ($0).
Or she could have reimbursed herself the lower amount of $60K.
But instead, she chose to reimburse herself the full $80K, despite "not wanting any of the money."

If she didn't want the money, it seems unfair to "reimburse" herself $80K, if the only intent was to re-direct more funds to Little Sister ($111K) and minimize the amount Big Sister would end up with ($14K).

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

Post by fposte » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:45 pm

JoeRetire wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:32 pm
jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:56 am
they are all aware of his will. but apparently, that doesn't matter!!
To be fair, you are aware of the will, too. Apparently you didn't think it would matter if you chose not to follow it.
I think that's the element that people are seeing from different angles. To some, OP did follow the will, and then gave her sister an additional gift and pledged her a further amount. To others, OP's decision to forgo the reimbursement was a failure to follow the instructions rather than a gift.

I think either way at this point it's moot which it was (though I would say it's an object lesson about not making decisions about money in the aftermath of bereavement). I think OP has to decide whether she's going to change her mind on the pledged money or not. That's an emotional and familial call. (I'm curious if the other sister has an opinion on this.) It's not great to pledge $69k to somebody and then take it back, but it's also not great to enrich somebody $69k that you already resent. It does seem like this felt to you like a conditional gift but the conditions weren't made clear to your sister; it seems unfair to withhold a promise from her based on her failure to meet standards that she was never told, and I'd have more sympathy for "It turns out I can't do without the money."

Ultimately, which choice will be the greater wound to you, your family, and your future is up to you to determine.

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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 4:12 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.
I see this point, and that's why she's mad. the thing is, I didn't reneg because of her choices, and she didn't buy a house, get married, but she did finally decide to go to grad school (but i'm not sure if this was related to the money or not, but maybe it was, which I do think 42K should've helpd with)
I was overwhelmed with my jobs, and I really wanted to quit, but couldn't with this "burden". But it wasn't just that... as time passed, my grief passed, and I realized I had taken care of my dad, without their help for five years, and that I did deserve to be reimbursed, and that.. I hate to say this, I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. it's an awful thing to say... plus she was having so much fun, and I was working like a crazy person.

people are doubting the 108K of savings -- 18.5 to 401k for me and my husband. 11K to roth iras. 6K to HSA. 55K to solo 401k with all the options that I did based upon 2 of the side gigs that give 1099 income.
I am still struggling with decicision to pay down house and other low interest debt vs. contribute to taxable (I've asked this question multiple times on this forum) that's why I still have the other debts. I figured, once taxable was as much as the mortgage, I could choose to pay it off then (or not)

probably when I had all the jobs etc and combined income with my husband was like 450K, and now with down to 1.5 jobs, I'm around 350K, but the lifestyle is better.

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

Post by KlangFool » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:25 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:12 pm

and that I did deserve to be reimbursed, and that.. I hate to say this, I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. it's an awful thing to say... plus she was having so much fun, and I was working like a crazy person.
jessikaur,

Money is a small issue. The question is will you be seen as fair to the rest of the family for the rest of your life?

In my opinion, if you did not want the money, you should split in half and give to both sisters. But, now, you are caught in this dilemma.

<<I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. >>

My father told me that it is better to take less than being perceived in taking others advantage. The bottom line is you are making 350K to 450K per year. Now, you are holding out 60+K on your younger unemployed sister. How would you look good in front of any of your family member?

Clean house. Settle the estate once and for all. Achieve closure.

Split the money evenly and give out to both of your sisters. Or, give the remaining 60+K to your younger sister.

KlangFool

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

Post by ohai » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:28 pm

I think the problem is that sister has a pattern of irresponsibility and will likely continue to leech off family in the future if given the chance to.

This still sounds super fake to me, but all the responses are entertaining, so I'll pretend it's all real.

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

Post by LiterallyIronic » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:28 pm

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
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.
Seriously. This thread has all the makings of /r/ChoosingBeggars.

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

Post by DanMahowny » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:30 pm

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.
I would follow your father's instructions.
Funding secured

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

Post by Nestegg_User » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:39 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:12 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.
I see this point, and that's why she's mad. the thing is, I didn't reneg because of her choices, and she didn't buy a house, get married, but she did finally decide to go to grad school (but i'm not sure if this was related to the money or not, but maybe it was, which I do think 42K should've helpd with)
I was overwhelmed with my jobs, and I really wanted to quit, but couldn't with this "burden". But it wasn't just that... as time passed, my grief passed, and I realized I had taken care of my dad, without their help for five years, and that I did deserve to be reimbursed, and that.. I hate to say this, I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. it's an awful thing to say... plus she was having so much fun, and I was working like a crazy person.

people are doubting the 108K of savings -- 18.5 to 401k for me and my husband. 11K to roth iras. 6K to HSA. 55K to solo 401k with all the options that I did based upon 2 of the side gigs that give 1099 income.
I am still struggling with decicision to pay down house and other low interest debt vs. contribute to taxable (I've asked this question multiple times on this forum) that's why I still have the other debts. I figured, once taxable was as much as the mortgage, I could choose to pay it off then (or not)

probably when I had all the jobs etc and combined income with my husband was like 450K, and now with down to 1.5 jobs, I'm around 350K, but the lifestyle is better.
that's probably why there would be resentment by you for her choices.... If the sister hadn't chosen the vacations and been in a more modest accommodations (not "a mansion"), I suspect then that use of any funds solely for grad school might be more palatable. But I wouldn't, under the circumstances that you gave, be giving more

I would be clearing ALL the med school debt first... since it can't be discharged any other way. A house is secured by the property. Presumably your other unsecured debt is smaller recurring charges; your vehicle is probably needed for your jobs (you mentioned other gigs) and there may be a way to have it paid for as business expense (LLC costs so as to not hit your personal returns??)

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

Post by stoptothink » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:44 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:25 pm
jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:12 pm

and that I did deserve to be reimbursed, and that.. I hate to say this, I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. it's an awful thing to say... plus she was having so much fun, and I was working like a crazy person.
jessikaur,

Money is a small issue. The question is will you be seen as fair to the rest of the family for the rest of your life?

In my opinion, if you did not want the money, you should split in half and give to both sisters. But, now, you are caught in this dilemma.

<<I really DO, but maybe I was being manipulated/being taken advantage of my family. >>

My father told me that it is better to take less than being perceived in taking others advantage. The bottom line is you are making 350K to 450K per year. Now, you are holding out 60+K on your younger unemployed sister. How would you look good in front of any of your family member?

Clean house. Settle the estate once and for all. Achieve closure.

Split the money evenly and give out to both of your sisters. Or, give the remaining 60+K to your younger sister.

KlangFool
Maybe it's a cultural thing, but how much the OP makes is totally irrelevant. Yeah, she screwed up with the communication, but because she works her tail off and is successful doesn't mean she should be made to feel guilty from anyone for not giving more to a sibling who won't put in the same amount of work.

My in-laws and one of my siblings has tried to pull this nonsense on us several times; like we owe them something because we have busted our tails and are more successful than they are.
Last edited by stoptothink on Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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

Post by getthatmarshmallow » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:46 pm

With respect, the issue here seems to be less the will, and more the promise that the OP is backing away from. I can see the sister's point, even if she should have not counted on the money until she had it.

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

Post by KlangFool » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:50 pm

stoptothink wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:44 pm

Maybe it's a cultural thing, but how much the OP makes is totally irrelevant. Yeah, she screwed up with the communication, but because she works her tail off and is successful doesn't mean she should be made to feel guilty from anyone for not giving more to a sibling who won't put in the same amount of work.
stoptothink,

I do not know which culture you are in. But, in almost every culture, the narrative of older sister making 350K to 450K has a dispute of 60+K inheritance from deceased father with a younger unemployed sister, the older sister will not win.

KlangFool

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

Post by KlangFool » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:52 pm

stoptothink wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:44 pm

My in-laws and one of my siblings has tried to pull this nonsense on us several times; like we owe them something because we have busted our tails and are more successful than they are.
stoptothink,

Did you inherit any money from your in-law and/or your parent? Then, it is relevant from the context of this discussion.

KlangFool

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

Post by stoptothink » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:57 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:52 pm
stoptothink wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:44 pm

My in-laws and one of my siblings has tried to pull this nonsense on us several times; like we owe them something because we have busted our tails and are more successful than they are.
stoptothink,

Did you inherit any money from your in-law and/or your parent? Then, it is relevant from the context of this discussion.

KlangFool
Did you not state that the OP should consider that other members of the family are going to look down on her not giving the younger sister more because she is successful? The OP's success is irrelevant, period. OP, messed up, did not communicate well and then changed her mind; I have no opinion on whether she should give more to her sister, but I do have a strong opinion that her financial success (and the perception of others) should have nothing to do with that decision.

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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 5:06 pm

student wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:16 pm
simas wrote:
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?
OP said "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," "a will that stated I should "reimburse" myself, then use the left over money and split it equally between the three of us 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," and "the will left me 125K." So OP reimbursed herself 80k. 125k-80k=45k. 45k/3=15k. So the older sister's share is 15k. Since a couple dollar amounts are "about," I assume the 15k vs 14k is due to rounding. So no. OP did not cheat the older sister. OP decided to give extra money to little sister out of her own share and from the reimbursement portion.
correct. I didn't want to give exact numbers, I have them in an excel spreadsheet.

Juice3
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Juice3 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:12 pm

Hard to parse this information but here is what I see ...

Dad's Estate assets = 125K
Dad's Estate Liabilities = -80K
----------------------------------------
Dad's Estate = 45K

Dad's will divide between 3 siblings, each gets 15k

Little Sis gets 15K via estate plus 27K gift from DR = 42K
Big Sis gets 14K via estate
DR gets 16K via estate plus Dads 80K liability settled

Are you sure your Dad intended to pay you 80K to reimburse you for financial and and emotional support? "reimburse" might mean reimburse for executor expenses not support. If Not, you owe each sister about 25K.

Are all your relationships this transactional in nature? That is sad.

As others have stated, gifting 27K to siblings often causes troubles like those you have posted, please examine your own motivations.

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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 5:13 pm

ohai wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:28 pm
I think the problem is that sister has a pattern of irresponsibility and will likely continue to leech off family in the future if given the chance to.

This still sounds super fake to me, but all the responses are entertaining, so I'll pretend it's all real.

hey truth is stranger than fiction!!! it is real, unfortunately.

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

Post by KlangFool » Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:15 pm

stoptothink wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:57 pm
KlangFool wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:52 pm
stoptothink wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:44 pm

My in-laws and one of my siblings has tried to pull this nonsense on us several times; like we owe them something because we have busted our tails and are more successful than they are.
stoptothink,

Did you inherit any money from your in-law and/or your parent? Then, it is relevant from the context of this discussion.

KlangFool
Did you not state that the OP should consider that other members of the family are going to look down on her not giving the younger sister more because she is successful? The OP's success is irrelevant, period. OP, messed up, did not communicate well and then changed her mind; I have no opinion on whether she should give more to her sister, but I do have a strong opinion that her financial success (and the perception of others) should have nothing to do with that decision.
stoptothink,

My statement is specific to the inherited money and nothing else.

KlangFool

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

Post by fposte » Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:30 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:12 pm

I see this point, and that's why she's mad. the thing is, I didn't reneg because of her choices,
They feature very strongly in your account of your decision, though, even in this post:
plus she was having so much fun, and I was working like a crazy person.
I think that you've got family stuff going on about division of responsibility and differing expectations of the three sisters that really complicates the money issue, and I'm not sure you'll find a happy answer to the second with the first unresolved.

FWIW, I received some money when my father died, and I made a pledge with a significant-to-me amount of it. It was not my best thought out decision; it was definitely made in the first flush of grief. Nowadays I think it would have been better to have done something else with the money. But I also don't think I should have reneged, and I'm doing okay without the money I promised. Will you do okay without the money you promised?

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

Post by Mlm » Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:35 pm

It sounds like you were named Executor by your father. Did you provide a final accounting to your two sisters including proof of the expenses that you were reimbursing yourself? Did they sign off on it before distributions were made?

If they did, then any promises you made to little sister is just that, a promise. It doesn't matter where the money comes from or how it is spent unless there were conditions expressly attached that you both understood. It's pretty crummy if you made a promise, your sister acted on that promise and then you reneged.

I understand ungrateful money sponging sisters, I have one. But it doesn't absolve me of promises made.

If it were me, I would have a heart to heart with her and explain that you were not thinking clearly at the time and see if you can come to some agreement. It's up to you what you can live with. Good luck

Pu239
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by Pu239 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:38 pm

Failing settlement of the will in accordance with the wishes of the father, OP should keep her promise and be more careful about promises in the future. What's a person's word worth? Some might be able assign a low number to break their word; for others, the value is greater than money. Integrity is a precious commodity not to be squandered for a trifle.

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

Post by likegarden » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:07 pm

I would follow through with the original plan, but not more. We had a similar problem.

When my father died he asked in his will that the his property and savings should be divided between my brother and me each getting half. He asked us not to give money to my sister because he and my mother had already spent so much on her. My brother and I had enough money, so decided to consider the medical problems my sister had and only take 1/3 each, place the other 1/3 in CDs and pay my sister annually a fixed amount out of those. Our wives and also the husband of my sister agreed, and we paid for 11 years until my sister died. Nothing was perfect: after the first payment my brother-in-law rented a Mercedes and with my sister and her girl friend drove around Germany staying in hotels. They did not do that again in later years.
Last edited by likegarden on Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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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 6:10 pm

fposte wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:45 pm
JoeRetire wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:32 pm
jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:56 am
they are all aware of his will. but apparently, that doesn't matter!!
To be fair, you are aware of the will, too. Apparently you didn't think it would matter if you chose not to follow it.
I think that's the element that people are seeing from different angles. To some, OP did follow the will, and then gave her sister an additional gift and pledged her a further amount. To others, OP's decision to forgo the reimbursement was a failure to follow the instructions rather than a gift.

I think either way at this point it's moot which it was (though I would say it's an object lesson about not making decisions about money in the aftermath of bereavement). I think OP has to decide whether she's going to change her mind on the pledged money or not. That's an emotional and familial call. (I'm curious if the other sister has an opinion on this.) It's not great to pledge $69k to somebody and then take it back, but it's also not great to enrich somebody $69k that you already resent. It does seem like this felt to you like a conditional gift but the conditions weren't made clear to your sister; it seems unfair to withhold a promise from her based on her failure to meet standards that she was never told, and I'd have more sympathy for "It turns out I can't do without the money."

Ultimately, which choice will be the greater wound to you, your family, and your future is up to you to determine.

ok, I wrote a lengthy response, and now it's gone!

Need to address about older sister and the will.
there is no "estate" to speak of. my father only had his car (went to my little sister to sell and keep proceeds) burial insurance went to my little sister, paid for funeral and whatever was left, she kept.
and 125K life insurance policy that paid out upon his death, left to me, with instructions explicitely written to reimburse myself for all of the financial support and then to split it the rest of the way three ways.

I used different calculations, but the most stringest was the 80K and you are correct, it was to give the absolutely minimum to the older sister.
The older sister shirked her responsibility in helping to care for our father, despite her dermatologist status. her excuses were this: she had to go on two around the world trips, and pay for her wedding.
basically, once she was almost done with her second trip, my father was in fairly poor health, and we begged her to come back (he had moved away from florida of his own volution because he wanted to be back in california) california is HCOL, lets just say a shitty apartment is 1700 bucks a month, which I shelled out for until older sister could return (before he was living in florida first in my condo, then with me as he couldn't care for himself) while older sister was gone, we hired a full time caretaker that would take of our father until she could return. he couldn't live with my little sister because she was also living in a shitty apartment at high costs but she got him a place close by where she could check up on him.
anyway, once my older sister returned from her trip, my little sister and I "teamed" up on her and essentially forced her to take responsibility for him. and she did a horrible job. so horrible, that we feel she casued him to die earliER than necessary. and that is where all the guilt came from. I wished I could've have convinced him to stay in florida and live with my husband and myself because we would've done a better job caring for him, and he would've had more years. in fact, that had been my plan, after his 3rd hospitalization, i had decided when it was safe for him to fly, we would move him back here. anyway, didn't quite make it at that.
so.. i have a contentious relationship with the older "selfish" sister. and she knows she did a horrible job. she is happy with the 14K, when likely she deserves nothing. that being said, my dad knew there was no love lost between us, so he did make the comment that i needed to give her SOMETHING.

anyway, i followed his will and used the 80K number to justify what I gave her per my younger sister's request as she knew the rest of the money, whatever was left was going to go to her (younger sister) 111K.
some people have commented that we have toxic relationships ---- that part is true. I *almost* posted an excerpt from little sister to show what I'm dealing with, but she has called me "disgusting" and "egotistical" has said "F - you" has told me that she has nothing to thank me for since, not giving her the money has ruined her life. i mean you name it, i'm the devil. also spewed out a whole lot of other nonsense. now, I know she has a right to be mad. but i think it may be an overreaction, by all matters both of them have done worse things to me, and I have forgiven them.

the "estate" if there was one is closed.
we are not fighting about who deserves what. we are fighting over the fact that she feels the 69K is a financial obligation/comittment, and I do not.
I told her I wanted to help her (and I feel I did, 28K is nothing to scoff at, correct?) but i agree with most people that she will not be happy until she gets the 69K and even then it's not a guarantee.
I really don't want to buy this relationship as toxic as it is.. but this is gonna sound craziest of all... I WANT to give her the money, and not out of any obligation, not to get the relationship back, but because I STILL want to help her. I'm just not sure giving her money is the best way in helping her or our relationship.
She says she doesn't feel entitled to it, but all of her actions suggest so... and she's already said she has nothing to thank me for, so I doubt giving her the money will get a simple thank you.

To Klangfool, there's not that many people in our family, and no one other than my older idiotic sister thinks I should give her the money (when asked why she wasn't helping out our sister was because, she lives in HCOL area, she has a daughter, blah blah blah) different variety of excuses but the same things I heard from five years before.
Honestly, I'm tired of being taken advantage of by my family. Yes, being generous and responsible are good things, but I don't want to be a piggybank, i don't want to have relationships with people because they want money.
I made two mistakes: one making decisions while grieving, and two being ambiguous.
I'm actually not certain I want a relationship with (either) sister because it's always toxic, but I just figured that's what all families have to deal with.
to sum: the estate is close. older sister is not contesting, she knows she got more than she deserved.
the younger sister is not contesting the estate. she is contesting the "financial comittment" that I made. she didn't outwardly ask me for the money, but did say some subtle things like.. my father told her to ask me for money when he was alive (he never mentioned any such thing)

now I'm must rambling. this is why none of this was in the original post.

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

Post by KlangFool » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:20 pm

OP,

It is very simple.

Give up the 69K and achieve closure. Or else, you will be bothered by this continuously. It is a small price to pay.

KlangFool

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

Post by fposte » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:26 pm

Yeah, this isn't really about money.

When you say "I did in fact tell her that I had wanted to give it to her to help her," what does that mean? It sounds to me like you said you'd give it to her then and now have changed your mind. I get that you may have been in the flush of acting as the responsible generous sibling following your dad's death and now feel like the sucker sibling, but that's still a heck of a flex if you said you'd give it to her.
she's already said she has nothing to thank me for, so I doubt giving her the money will get a simple thank you.
But you're not giving the money because you want her to say thank you. You're giving the money because you said you would. If you didn't say you would, you can tell her to go pound sand. This was never going to make her like you more or appreciate you taking on the role of the responsible one, so that's not a factor. Take the action that makes you the most at peace with your own conscience.

ETA: or what KlangFool said :beer.

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

Post by whodidntante » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:29 pm

I still give to friends and family who need it, and I'm talking about what I perceive as actual need. But I consider the money torn up, burned, and thrown in the trash as soon as it leaves my bank account. Cash never seems to go to what I think a reasonable allocation would be. I would not finance someone's lifestyle. They will have to do that themselves. I think you should have taken your fair share. It's not like you are a financially independent philanthropist.

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

Post by trustquestioner » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:37 pm

Give her the money and get a therapist.

ronno2018
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by ronno2018 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:48 pm

cherijoh wrote:
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.
Well I agree your perspective is valid, it is just matter of philosophy I suppose. I just think being overly generous to the rest of the family and then setting limits and moving on could be a path to future happiness. Like I said I think the OP did an awesome thing for their parent. I am thinking it is OK to pass on their share of the inheritance despite what the parent said about "reimbursement" for the support at the end of his life.

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8foot7
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by 8foot7 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:15 pm

After the additional details in your post, I recommend that you give your little sister $10,000 and tell her that you love her and you're sorry about the confusion but that you've decided that you've been overly generous with her monetarily and that ends now, and that you want to rebuild the relationship but you're done being taken advantage of, you want her in your life but you won't be treated as a Visa with an infinite limit, you don't think she makes good choices with money but that it's none of your business and you won't say another word about it to her, but that this $10,000 is it--this is the last financial transaction between the two of you.

And then your little sister can decide whether that's enough for her or not.

I'd then pay off your medical school debt with the remainder of the money and wash your hands of this. You did the best you could. You made some mistakes, don't we all, you were more than fair with the actual dollars, you tried to honor what you thought your father would want, and you can't control peoples' reactions. And then you should sleep soundly for a while and understand that some folks never stop figuring out ways to take advantage of other people and some folks draw the short straw when it comes to quality family members.

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

Post by scorcher31 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:24 pm

For what it's worth OP i followed this breakdown of money the whole way through. It sounds like the estate is dealt with. Based on your older sister's income as a dermatologist she probably isn't going to waste the time contesting a few thousand here and there anyways, nor will she likely resent handouts to your younger sister. It's sounds as if the family environment has been a bit chaotic though all around, and maybe your older sister just wants to do her own thing and stay away from all of it. Either way you have no obligations there.

You are also square on anything you owed your younger sister from the will. I would be curious specifically what was exactly said to your younger sister regarding the extra money you were going to give her. Did you say I'd like to help you, did you say I will help you, did you tell her this multiple times, did you stipulate any conditions, did you discuss the exact amount, did you stipulate what you would give it to her for. Exactly what was said and how it was said/reinforced makes a difference in terms of how I would proceed. This is where more details would be useful. If you made a relatively firm commitment, even if she can't prove it, I think it might be better to give her the money. Again it comes back to if you truly made a promise to her. If you said you would help her with school, perhaps you tell her I am going to pay your tuition directly to your school up to 69K. Maybe you can give it to her in installments contingent on XYZ as it is your money, but again it depends on how much this was previously discussed. If you do end up giving her the money, I agree what others have said you need to let her know you aren't a bank and this is a one time deal so you can keep your word to her. Let her know you want to keep her in your life, but she needs to be responsible with the money because once it's gone it's gone.

scorcher31
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by scorcher31 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:37 pm

I really think you can stick to one job between you and your husband btw. I don't know your total finances but your income is good and your savings rate is good from your posts in this thread. I don't know your assets, loans, age, etc. but I suspect you guys can pay off your debt, and your sister if needed, and still save a substantial sum without all these jobs. Don't burn your self out!

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

Post by dknightd » Wed Mar 13, 2019 7:49 pm

jessikaur wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:53 am
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,
...
Any help would be appreciated.
After only a quick read. This is what sticks out to me. You told her you wanted to give it to her. Now you want to perhaps back out. You should have settled this years ago. Taken what was "owed" you then split the rest.
If I was in your shoes I'd do what my parents wanted. But you told your sister you wanted to give her more. So I would do that. Probably she needs it more than you.

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

Post by ericcohen » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:03 pm

You don't need the money, they do. If I were in your position, I would give it all to them, in two equal portions.

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

Post by onourway » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:08 pm

KlangFool wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:20 pm
OP,

It is very simple.

Give up the 69K and achieve closure. Or else, you will be bothered by this continuously. It is a small price to pay.

KlangFool
I would take this advice. You can either argue over this money, which is likel trivial in your overall life trajectory, possibly irreparably damaging your relationship with your sister, or you can follow through with your initial decision, and choose to get over it.

Two traveling monks reached a town where there was a young woman waiting to step out of her sedan chair. The rains had made deep puddles and she couldn’t step across without spoiling her silken robes. She stood there, looking very cross and impatient. She was scolding her attendants. They had nowhere to place the packages they held for her, so they couldn’t help her across the puddle.

The younger monk noticed the woman, said nothing, and walked by. The older monk quickly picked her up and put her on his back, transported her across the water, and put her down on the other side. She didn’t thank the older monk, she just shoved him out of the way and departed.

As they continued on their way, the young monk was brooding and preoccupied. After several hours, unable to hold his silence, he spoke out. “That woman back there was very selfish and rude, but you picked her up on your back and carried her! Then she didn’t even thank you!

“I set the woman down hours ago,” the older monk replied. “Why are you still carrying her?”

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

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:42 pm

OP,

According to your above post you were the sole beneficiary of a life insurance policy in the amount of $125k. You father asked for you to be reimbursed and the rest to be split. That’s nice of him but the whole $125k is yours and your father’s will has no say in it. You must decide what to do with the money.

Be aware of the gift tax implications of handing all of your money out to siblings.

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

Post by HomerJ » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:55 pm

MP173 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:06 pm
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.
This is good advice.

Ask her what she thinks is fair. If she says "I think I should get the rest of the money", state it back to her...

"So you're saying of the $114k, big sis got $14k, and you should get $100k (plus the extra policy Dad had just for you), and I should get nothing? Just trying to be clear, that's what you think is fair, right?"

Maybe she will surprise you...

But if she stubbornly says "Yep", say "Okay, but this is all there is... There's no more coming after this... "
The J stands for Jay

California88
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Re: Should I give more money to a family member?

Post by California88 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 9:35 pm

"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."
It sounds like OP did have some kind of conversation with her little sister to the effect that she'd give her the $ to help her (1) buy a house, (2) for her wedding; and (3) help her get back into school ... so if little sister didn't do those 3 things with the $ ... then it was little sister (not OP) who didn't live up to the agreement!

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

Post by Wricha » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:12 pm

You were ok getting nothing before your sister decided she would spend in a way you thought was inappropriate. I would take the remaining money and divide it between my sisters and take nothing. No one is going to build a statue saying he is the world’s greatest doctor, nice guy or wonderful sister those praises have long left the barn. What they can’t say here is a guy who reneged on a promise. The best you can hope for at this point is a tentative peace. Honestly, given your potential income and youth $69k or $80k will be a rounding error to your in retirement. At this point seeking justice is going to feel like revenge so settle for peace.
Last edited by Wricha on Thu Mar 14, 2019 2:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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

Post by msk » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:24 pm

People getting handouts always feel that the donor is rich enough to afford it comfortably. Do not expect much gratitude. Your little sis was expecting another $69k. Her grad school is perhaps 3 years? Let's round that off to 40 months to allow for a job search at the end. Now that she is doing something responsible and improving her earning power, promise her that as an encouragement, 69,000/40 or $1700 per month for 40 months or till graduation+job search, whichever is shorter. She drops out prematurely and cut off the hand out immediately. Hopefully she will not spend it all on pot... But frankly, it is her choice how she wishes to spend the money once it is in her hands. By going to grad school she seems to be finally on the right path. Help her stay there.

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

Post by mrspock » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:24 pm

g2morrow wrote:
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
+1 .... and I think giving money to siblings, friends.... the dog... without giving equally to all others in the "class" is fraught with peril. You just don't do it, take your "good intentions" and bury them in a hole in the backyard...and walk away.

A pretty big mess now, you either pay out to the sister and be upset yourself (feeling like you've been extorted) or you don't give a penny and she get's bent out of shape over it. No good option here, the lesser of two evils here is to pay it out as you can control your own reaction to this situation, but not anybody else.

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

Post by Olemiss540 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 10:32 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.
And no "gift" is ever free.
I hold index funds because I do not overestimate my ability to pick stocks OR stock pickers.

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

Post by PalmQueen » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:30 pm

DanMahowny wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:30 pm
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.
I would follow your father's instructions.
Your father left a will and it seems named you the Executor. As Executor, you're legally bound to distribute the assets according to the instructions in the will.

It sounds like you're not clear on the role of the Executor. There are many books and sites on the internet that list the responsibilities.

Once the assets have been distributed and the estate is closed, your share of the estate is yours to do with as you please. If this includes making a gift to anyone, be sure you follow the IRS gifting regulations.

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

Post by jackholloway » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:40 pm

cherijoh wrote:
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.
Because the OP apparently told the little sister that the OP did not want her share, and would split it? Once you tell someone you are going to give them something, they can be forgiven for thinking you will do it if you can. OP could have said they were going to follow the will, but the OP decided to look generous. Now that desire is coming home to roost.

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

Post by Dottie57 » Wed Mar 13, 2019 11:51 pm

I don’t think that there was an estate. Dad left an insurance policy with the beneficiary being the OP. Neither of the sisters were named beneficiary. Legally the money was OP’s.

If dad wanted the will to affect the insurance proceeds it should have been left to the estate. OP would have had to go to probate with the will and the money divided as the will stated.

Even though OP distributed the money to siblings, she was not legally obligated to do so since she was the sole beneficiary of the insurance.

Both wills and insuramce are legal documents. The insurance was a contact. The will did not effect the life insurance since it was not part of the will.


Any lawyers out there? Is this understanding correct.

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

Post by jessikaur » Thu Mar 14, 2019 12:11 am

Juice3 wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 5:12 pm
Hard to parse this information but here is what I see ...



Are all your relationships this transactional in nature? That is sad.

obviously not, because then we wouldn't be having this problem. I would've just followed the will.

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

Post by Misenplace » Thu Mar 14, 2019 12:27 am

Goodness gracious, what drama. We don’t have the complete story, but I can tell now that 69k will be a rounding error in OP’s portfolio in 10 years. And OP has only 2 sisters. Get some therapy and get over it. Not sure what else this thread can do.

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