Do Not Put Off Estate Planning for Your Blended Family
Over the years, our Estates and Trusts Department has handled a great many cases involving second marriages, blended families, and the wide variety of issues involved in these matters. In many of these circumstances, a couple finds the necessary decisions regarding the distribution of their assets upon the deaths of each spouse to be complicated by unique family relationships, competing financial interests, and unavoidable personal dynamics. As a result, many couples in a second marriage with a blended family delay the process of developing their wills and estate plans due to the challenges which these matters might present.
In some cases, a couple can delay the process to the point that one spouse has potentially lost the legal capacity to enter into a valid will or other legal document. These delays invite and create serious post-death disputes, controversies, hard feelings, and even contentious litigation which far outweigh any challenge in developing rational estate plan while both spouses are of sound mind and able to enter into legally sufficient transactions, including wills, trusts, deeds, and powers of attorney. Ironically, by delaying the creation of a proper estate plan, a couple can leave the next generation with far more heartaches than benefits, even where significant assets are involved.
By Caitlin McAndrews, Esq., McAndrews Law Offices, P.C.