The fact is, estate planning gets more complex if you have been married multiple times, taken on stepchildren, or had children with your new spouse.
You do not want to leave anyone out your estate plan. If you were to leave all of your assets to your new spouse, your children from a previous marriage might never get to see their inheritances.
Let’s look at some reasons why you should meet with a lawyer to sort out the estate planning details for blended families.
4 Reasons Why Estate Planning Is Essential for Blended Families
When you meet with a lawyer, you can talk about your intentions with your assets if something were to happen to you. Then, the lawyer can translate those intentions into legal documents to keep your money safe and distributed according to your wishes.
- Include All Children As Beneficiaries: As we mentioned, you can outline who gets what in your estate plan. Instead of passing all of your assets over to your current spouse, you will be able to name multiple beneficiaries and the funds to distribute to each.
- Create a Trust with Stipulations for Qualifying for Inheritance: Create a trust for your loved ones with instructions on when you want to distribute assets to your children based on their age. If a child is not in the condition to receive a large sum of money, the trust can state the criteria for receiving the money.
- Avoid Probate and Family Drama: When an estate plan is unclear, the estate will enter probate and go through a court process to determine how the money is distributed. This can happen if the estate plan passes all the money on to a short-term spouse without including the children. Or vice versa. Be clear about your decisions, even writing a letter of intent to read with the documents.
- Make Quick Changes to an Estate Plan that Is Out of Date: When you work with a lawyer, you can continually update your estate plan to include the people that are currently in your life. With each life change, contact your lawyer to add a grandchild, remove an old spouse, or update a beneficiary who may have passed away.
Keep your affairs in order and up to date with the help of an estate planning firm. You will never regret taking care of your loved ones if something were to happen to you. So instead of hoping it all pans out, be responsible and thorough with proper estate planning.
Hire a Trusted Estate Planning Lawyer in the Temecula Valley
If you have a modern family, it is important you seek the help of a an estate planning attorney in Temecula to ensure nothing falls through the cracks. The estate planning experts at Shoup Legal can help ensure all your bases are covered. Contact us today at (951) 445-4114 or email [email protected].