A woman has been left conflicted over whether she should split her inheritance with her half sister who received a fraction of what she got.
According to a study conducted by real estate firm Coldwell Banker in October 2019, millennials are predicted to inherit somewhere in the region of $68 trillion from their baby boomer parents over the next decade.
For some, that inheritance will likely provide financial security for their family’s long-term future. But what if securing your own future meant sacrificing that of your sibling’s?
That’s the predicament facing one married mother-of-three who took to Mumsnet to detail the quandary she has found herself in after her late grandmother and father left nothing to her half sister in their respective wills.
According to the post, things had been “very, very difficult” for her and her family since the pandemic hit with her husband currently the sole breadwinner in their house. Worse still, during this time her mom, dad and her grandmother sadly passed away.
Despite the difficulties, she said her husband “stepped up to the plate” and has been a pillar of strength during a time of intense family turmoil. At the end of it all, she discovered she had “inherited a quarter of a million pounds ($325,000).”
However, she also discovered that her half sister, who she shares the same mother with, was only left £17,000 ($22,000), representing her half of their mom’s savings. “She made dubious choices with men and my parents were disappointed,” she said. “She has a couple of kids and is raising them on her own.”
The situation has left the woman feeling intensely guilty as she knows the money will essentially help her and her husband pay off their mortgage and “set us up for life” and her husband would likely oppose any alternative.
“I want to give her half but I couldn’t even begin to discuss this with my husband. My friend said my sister made bad choices and this is what happens,” she wrote. “If I gave her anything voluntarily I don’t think my marriage would recover.”
Turning to social media for help, unfortunately the woman found little in the way of consensus with Mumsnet users offering conflicting viewpoints on the situation.
Peboh commented: “I’d really struggle with this. It’s not her fault she’s a half sibling. I’d personally give her something.”
Obira, by contrast, argued: “The money was left to you and you need to prioritize your own marriage and future. Giving away hundreds of thousands of pounds is madness.”
PennyFleck felt she should consider splitting it, noting the woman would have likely been “thrilled” to have inherited £100,000 ($130,000) before this saga began.
Mummysgirl12 felt she should “respect the wishes of the dead” but also theorized that giving the half sister a smaller amount in the region of £10,000 ($13,000) “could help her” and would likely not upset her husband or dent their long-term plans.
Dillydollydingdong told the woman that whatever she does “it won’t be right.”
“If you give her a large sum of money she won’t be grateful because she will think she should get half and your husband won’t be pleased,” they wrote.
“If you don’t give her anything, she’ll be resentful for evermore. I think if your dad had wanted to leave her some money, he would have done so.”
Newsweek has contacted the original poster for comment.