Poor Planning Leads to Rough Farm Transition.

In this case, the son had farmed with his father for 25 years until the father's death.  The father's will left one-half of the farm personal property to the son with the other half passing to the son's three non-farm siblings.  The will also left the farmland to the four children equally with the son having a right of first refusal with respect to any sale of the farmland.  The son filed a claim in the probate estate that he was entitled to all of the farmland based on an oral promise from his parents and that he had detrimentally relied on that promise.  The trial court denied the claim and the son appealed.  On appeal, the court affirmed on the basis that the evidence failed to establish a clear and definite promise that the son would receive the farmland without paying for it.  The court also held that the evidence failed to support the son's claim that he was entitled to be reimbursed for funds he spent on machinery and buildings over the prior 25 years.  In re Estate of Beitz, No. 14-1492, 2015 Iowa App. LEXIS 519 (Iowa Ct. App. Jun. 10, 2015).

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