If one watches an estate dispute among wealthy families in the media, one sometimes finsd out that it isn’t just about the dollars.
Traditionally, family estate feuds are over wealth, crown or other inheritances connected with money. Generally speaking, however, something deeper is often going on, according to Psych Central in “Death, Wealth, and the Psychological Anatomy of a Family Dispute.”
In the U.S., the participants in a family estate fight no longer enlist armies to fight it out on a field of battle. Instead, today’s battles are waged in court. However, the reasons for today’s disputes are very similar to what they were hundreds of years ago.
Psychologists and even pop culture have known for a long time about sibling rivalry. Although there is disagreement about the core reasons for the phenomenon, no one disputes that it exists. Whether it has its roots in birth order, a desire to be loved more by parents or something else, sibling rivalry is real and does not disappear when children become adults.
The psychological reasons that lead siblings to argue over who got to ride shotgun in the car are the same reasons that lead to arguments over estates.
Knowing sibling rivalry exists and making estate plans with it in mind, can sometimes make for a smoother process.
Reference: Psych Central (Dec. 13, 2016) “Death, Wealth, and the Psychological Anatomy of a Family Dispute.”