Blended Family Estate Planning

We have all seen blended families portrayed on TV.  They are always depicted by happy, wholesome family members that love each other to the depths of their hearts.  In reality however, this is not always true. The love factor may always resonate but elements can fade when it comes to the passing of a loved one and their estate.  Often time’s things get messy.

In order to skip that mess and to have a better plan, it is important to hire an estate planning attorney whose firm specializes in family law who will help you create a plan to prevent any uneasiness between family members upon your passing.  However, before you do that, you should really consider your future. In doing so, you should alleviate any guess work and but incorporate all the metrics which can give you a real insight into what lies ahead. Also, it can be said that the future of your blended family depends upon who owns the estate, how many members have a right to it, and are there any preliminary steps already taken by the estate owner.

There are three basic considerations to think about when you are estate planning.

1) Trusts


Trusts are established in order to ensure a healthy distribution of the assets of a remarried couple. There are many types of trusts, the QIPT, Marital, and Bypass trusts. However, choosing the right trust depends upon the financial status of the real estate.

It should also be noted that whatever trust you are establishing, you should always consider placing your children as the intermediate beneficiaries. By doing this, you conserve their rights as on your death they will be paid some amount.

On the other hand, if you name surviving spouse as your successor trustee, then chances are that the differences between him or her and your children will pull the family in troubles in the future.

2) The Power of Wills and Attorneys


It doesn’t matter which kind of trust you establish. If you’re living will says something otherwise than what the trust says, then your will is the one that is going to be preferred. We recommend you set up a living will and also establish power of attorney not only for your medical decisions but also for the financial decisions when you are no longer able to take them yourself.

This practice can eliminate the confusion and the emotional stress that would prevail in your family upon your terminal ailment. Also, someone who is experienced and sound minded will help you indirectly steer things the way you want it to go.

3) Life Insurance Policies and Retirement Plans


Both of these require you to name beneficiaries for the assets that they bear. Upon your death, the beneficiary that you have named will be given all the assets. Thus, it is necessary for everyone to check the beneficiaries which they have named so that a minor or a former spouse is not listed.

Finding the right estate planning in a blended family can be a tough task because in such families the tendency of complexities is more. Thus, in order to get everything right, work with an elder law attorney that offers specialized services in family law.

Learn more about attorney Sean J. Nichols and the legal services he provides for clients including: estate planning, elder law issues, Medicaid planning, elder care, probate law, guardianships, and power of attorney (POA) at www.seanjnichols.com.  To contact the offices of Sean J Nichols call 734.386.0224 today.

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