I can’t imagine anything more potentially destructive than getting involved in trying to settle a family matter where emotions are rife, hurts are deep, ignorance prevails, and inertia abounds. Trust me, if you have a dog in the fight, make sure it is the fiercest canine on the block, because that is what it will take to win if that is your game. Otherwise, if you don’t like disturbing sleeping dogs, lobbing hand grenades, or stepping on toes to get action, avoid it at all costs. Unfortunately, I have not necessarily heeded my best advice. Blood is definitely thicker than water, and if you are only an in-law with little skin in the game, don’t insert yourself into a toxic mess even if you feel you are acting on behalf of a significant other. In the end, if the issues aren’t resolved to the satisfaction of all beneficiaries, lawyers and administrators will quickly devour the assets. On such matters, the law is not an ass: it is only doing what we too often allow it to do because we don’t trust each other enough to come together. How sad!