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Tips for estate planning after marital changes

In today's society, it is not uncommon for marriages to end and for the ex-spouses to eventually remarry. But a remarriage can create estate planning issues which the remarrying spouse should promptly address. People in Polk County who are moving past a divorce and onto a new marriage may want to consider how they need to update their estate plan to avoid any family disputes down the road.

If the spouses have a blended family including children from prior marriages, they should discuss what assets they want to leave to the children of their marriage as well as the children of prior marriages. Likewise, they should talk about their expectations for leaving assets to each other. In some cases, a newly remarried spouse may decide to plan on leaving the bulk of their assets to their children, with little going to the second spouse. This will require them to update wills and other legal instruments.

Another important estate planning issue is any financial obligations a spouse has related to their prior marriage. An example of this would be if the divorce settlement from the prior marriage requires a person to make their ex-spouse a beneficiary of an insurance policy or retirement account. Under that scenario, the person would be limited as to how much they could leave to a new spouse.

The bottom line is that people who are remarrying should thoroughly discuss their estate planning objectives. An experienced estate planning attorney can help facilitate this discussion and draft estate planning documents that address all the couple's concerns.

Source: Fidelity.com, "The second time around," Accessed on June 17, 2016

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