Stepchildren and Estate Planning

Providing for Children and Stepchildren 

When spouses get married for a second time and either of them has a child, it is important for the spouses to discuss and make plans for who will inherit their property.  A spouse may want to make sure her children receive the assets she brought into the marriage. There may be business assets which belonged to her first husband or she may just want to make sure the assets she worked for all her life go to her own children rather than to her stepchildren.

Property Often Passes to the Surviving Spouse

It is common for a surviving spouse to inherit most, if not all, of an estate when one spouse passes away and there are tax advantages to doing so.  When the surviving spouse dies, the property then passes according to the last living spouse’s will.  In order for one spouse to guarantee her children will receive her property, she must create estate documents leaving the property directly to her children so the property does not pass to the surviving spouse.

Creative estate planning can also provide for step children if that is your goal. An experienced estate planning attorney can draft documents which provide income for a spouse, preserve assets for children and also provide a percentage of assets for step children.

Getting Legal Help

Experienced Estate Planning Attorney Elga Goodman understands that each family has unique needs and circumstances and she can help you create an estate plan which protects all the important people in your life. Contact us today at 973-841-5111.

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