Practical Estate Planning Advice for Blended Families

blended familiesEstate planning is so important in order to protect your assets and ensure that everything gets properly passed on to your heirs.  But in the case of blended families, things can get complicated.  Being part of a blended family where people have been widowed, divorced or remarried can present its share of challenges, with estate planning being one of them.  Read on for some tips to navigate these unique hurdles.

A Cookie Cutter Will is Not Going to Suffice for Blended Families

You and your current spouse may have kids from previous marriages as well as kids together.  Each of you may bring in assets that were acquired prior to your current relationship.  Making sure that everyone you love is sufficiently provided for can be tricky.  A detailed estate plan that is specifically structured to meet the needs of your family is very important for these situations.  This will ensure that biological children, as well as the new extended family, are all protected.

Good Communication is Important

You may have a plan regarding how you want assets to be distributed, but even if you discuss the plan with your current partner, that doesn’t mean it won’t be questioned by other family members.  Discussing financial plans with current and former spouses when possible can help to avoid surprises down the line.  And of course, putting everything in writing will help to ensure that your wishes will be legally carried out when the time is right.

Choose an Experienced, Reliable Trustee

As much as we would like to hope that the whole extended family will always get along, sometimes that just doesn’t happen.  There might possibly be arguing or tension between the different sides of the family, which means you’ll need someone responsible to maintain control of the situation as well as properly invest or distribute your assets according to your wishes.

Your Attorney Can be a Valuable Resource When Preparing Your Estate Plan

At Churchill, Quinn, Richtman & Hamilton, Ltd, we have decades of experience helping our clients prepare for their future and that of their heirs.  We can help guide you through the important decisions that need to be made regarding the division of your assets based on your unique, individual circumstances.  There are many estate planning options that can be tailored to the unique needs of blended families and we can help determine what will most benefit yours.  Contact us at 847-223-1500 to speak to one of our knowledgeable attorneys and get your estate plan started.

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