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Mom refuses to change son's last name so he can get 'inheritance' from rich grandparents.

Mom refuses to change son's last name so he can get 'inheritance' from rich grandparents.


As a parent, it's only natural to want the best for your child both emotionally and financially. Ideally, these two would always complement each other, but that's not always the case. This means parents sometimes have to weigh the pros and cons between financial comfort and emotional tidiness.

In a popular post on the AITA subreddit, a woman asked if she's wrong for not wanting to change her son's surname in order to secure him an inheritance. She wrote:

WIBTA if I don't change my son's name even though it may cause him to lose an inheritance?

I (24) got pregnant while I was taking a gap year traveling. I met an older guy, nothing gross, I was 19 he was 23. We had fun. I was working in a bar to make money while I explored his city. When I got pregnant he lost interest really quickly. I understood but I am pro-choice. And I chose not to terminate. I went home and had my son. I also made sure to get child support. He could afford it.

He did fight it though. I had to prove paternity and everything. Through that, his parents found out. They are well off. They have met my son and they truly do seem to love him. They have provided gifts for his birthday and Christmas. They helped me with extra money so I could complete my university without going into debt. They have taken us on vacation with them so they could spend time with him.

They aren't my biggest fans but we are cordial to each other. Three months ago my son's father passed away. He got drunk at his bachelor party, tripped on the sidewalk, and hit his head. And that was all she wrote. My son and I attended the funeral. We spent a week in that city so his grandparents could see him. They approached me with an offer. They had no other children or grandchildren.

Their son was only 28 so he had lots of time to provide them with legitimate kids (they did not say this I'm just assuming) so they never thought about my son's name. They said that if I changed his surname to theirs legally they would make him their primary heir. I think this is dumb. He is their only grandchild and they would deny him an inheritance because of his last name?

I said I would consider it, to be polite, and have left it at that. I actually have a pretty good life as it is. My family has been very supportive. And because of the whole court thing my son's father had to have life insurance with him as the beneficiary. Would it be nice for my kid to get a big sum of money. Yes. Do I want him to have the surname of a man who didn't want him, see him, or love him? No.

I have been talking to my family about it and a few of them think I'm being an AH for giving up this kind of money for my son. It is generational wealth and I'm making the decision based on emotion. I think they are AHs for thinking money is the only thing that matters.

I think I will tell my son's grandparents that they can talk to him about it when he is 16. He will be old enough to understand the implications but young enough not to be tied professionally to his last name.

People had a lot to say about this one.

Fartin_Scorsese wrote:

'They would deny him an inheritance because of his last name?' Isn't that what you're doing?

dunks615 wrote:

YTA. F that dude but also you’re kinda screwing your kid by not changing the name. That money is your child’s future and guess what they’ll probably want it regardless of y’all’s beef. If they find out that could also wreck y’all’s relationship.

ETA: Get the bag, you can be honoring the grandparents that have been involved in your son’s life and ultimately your kid can change the name if they don’t like it but the money can allow your child to pursue their dreams w/o having to worry about the stress of loans etc.

judgingA-holes wrote:

I get where you are coming from in the sense that you aren't fond of him having a name that is tied to his dad who didn't want anything to do with him. However, I just want to give you some things to think about:

His paternal grandparents did want a relationship with him and have helped out, so the last name is also tied to them who DO want him in their life. You are looking at the as they will totally deny him an inheritance because of his last name, but they didn't say they would exclude him altogether. They said he would be the primary heir.

Maybe that means without the last name that all property will be sold and all money will be split with other family members, charities, etc, but if he has their last name that all properties and most money would go to him with little splitting of the money to anyone else. You think that you can wait until he is 16 but that's 11ish years away. What if something happens to them before then?

How do you think your son will feel if he doesn't get this and finds out that he could have had generational wealth and never would have to worry about money and all you had to do was simply change his last name?

I mean personally if someone had told my mom I could get generational wealth as long as she named me dumb@$$ ho, and my mom didn't and I found out, I would be mad that my mom didn't rename me LOL.

Maximum-Swan-1009 wrote:

YTA. What happens if the grandparents pass away before your son turns 16 and can decide. He could lose a very generous inheritance because of your resentment of his father. His grandparents have been kind to both your son and you. Do this for your son.

OriginalJersey wrote:

NAH…no matter what you do you could be considered an AH!

But…could you suggest hyphenating the surnames?

A) You’re the primary parent so he should have yours

B) I know that sometimes travelling with a child with a different surname to you can be problematic (asked for proof that they’re your child with birth certificates etc) so him having your surname would be helpful in those circumstances (and sure there’s other circumstances).

C) he still has their surname

D) he can then choose to amend his surname to one or the other when he’s 16?

Just a thought!

While there are some mixed responses, it's pretty clear a lot of people agree that OP is TA for potentially blocking her son from a life changing amount of money.

Sources: Reddit
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