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Estate planning considerations for blended families

On Behalf of | Jul 28, 2023 | Estate Planning

For many people in Georgia, new happiness comes later in life through remarriage after divorce or the death of a spouse. However, any blended family–especially one with adult children on one or both sides–may need special consideration when it is time to consider planning for the future of your estate.

Planning for the future

Both partners in a blended family can benefit from open discussion about the outcomes they would like to see for their loved ones after they pass. They may wish to set up safeguards, putting aside specific property or sums of money to pass down to their children and ensuring that all parties are protected after their parent passes away. Estate planning attorneys can provide guidance to remarried couples seeking to support one another and protect both sides of the family throughout the process.

Remember to change beneficiaries

When you remarry, estate planning may not be at the top of the agenda. However, there are some important tasks to address quickly. Life insurance policies, retirement accounts and investment funds often have named beneficiaries. In many cases, remarried couples may wish to name each other as the beneficiaries; they may also wish to preserve some accounts naming children as the recipients. However, when beneficiaries are not updated in a timely manner, a former spouse may remain part of the estate plan.

Updating wills and trusts

Along with changing beneficiaries, changing your will is also a priority after remarriage. You may want to add your spouse to your will while also specifying specific sums or properties to pass down to your children. Both spouses can work together to create an estate plan that reflects their interests and the needs of their loved ones.

Of course, individual circumstances may vary from one couple to another. One of you may have a child with disabilities requiring an ABLE account or a trust for their needs, or some children may be better equipped to handle inheritance than others. By communicating about future plans, blended families can work to achieve a harmonious estate plan.