Friday, October 9, 2009 larry shapiro/ Family division

Dividing your personal property in your estate can easily be handled with a qualified appraiser. Let's say you have antiques, art, collectibles, and other items of value and you are concerned that your children will quarrel over them upon your death. Hire a qualified appraiser to assign values to each item. When you estate is settled, each child picks out what he or she would like to own. You could use the draw straws method to see who has first pick. Once the first family member has picked an item, then the process continues with each member having turns in the same order. Once everyone has chosen, the dollar value for each individual is added up. The person who has the least in dollar value is compensated with cash to equal the amounts taken by the others. When the process is over, each child has an equal amount either in objects or cash or a combination of the two. Whatever is left over is either sold to a dealer, at public auction, or donated. This system makes the process fair and equitable for everyone.