In Blended Families, Don’t Make Your Children Wait for an Inheritance When you design your estate plan, don’t make your children wait for an inheritance, especially if you’re in a blended family and want to keep the peace. Having your children wait until your spouse, who is not their parent, dies, pits your loved ones against each other. Dividing Your Money Your specific asset distribution plan will depend upon your financial assets, your spouse’s assets, and your goals. However, in general, either divvy up your assets or purchase life insurance to create a larger estate at your death. Don’t make your children the remainder beneficiary of your spouse’s trust or pass all your assets to your spouse, unless they are his or her children also. Upon your death, let your spouse go his or her way and your children go their way; if there is no financial entanglement, they may be able to keep the peace. Dividing Your Personal Possessions Make sure that your children are specifically gifted special personal possessions or family heirlooms, to remember you by. Make a list of specific gifts in your will, trust, or memorandum, referenced in your will or trust. Jot down why that specific possession is important and why it’s being given to that child. One of the greatest sadnesses expressed at the death of a parent in blended families is the lack of sentimental gifts. If the estate plan is not thought through, the second spouse inherits all personal possessions and the children never see them. Communicate with Your Loved Ones The most effective thing you can do during your lifetime is to communicate. Let them know that you have engaged in comprehensive estate planning and that all loved ones are provided for. Let them know who’s in charge, when, and explain why. If your loved ones feel secure in their place in your life and in your estate plan, family discord will be greatly reduced. If you have a blended family and want to keep the peace, consult with a qualified estate planning attorney. Experienced estate planning attorneys Forest Hills NY of Davidov Law Group offers estate planning and business planning resources to residents of Forest Hills NY. To learn more about these free resources, please visit http://www.davidovlaw.com today.
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