What Your Relationship Status Has to Do with Providing a Fair Inheritance – Part 2 of 3
By: Cristin Gerczak, Esq.
January 26, 2021
Welcome back to our series of posts on providing a fair inheritance. In our first post, we went over the general idea of “fairness” in estate planning and what you should think about when deciding how to distribute your assets. In today’s post, we’re going to take a closer look at how your relationship status can impact this process. Next week, we’ll look at how important family communication is.
One of the many factors that you need to take into consideration during the estate planning process is your relationship status. Whether you are single without children, single with children, in a first marriage with or without children, in a second (or later) marriage with or without children, or living with a significant other with or without children can significantly affect who your beneficiaries will be and what type of distribution is appropriate and realistic.
Each situation has specific obstacles that need to be thought through and fleshed out. For example, let’s say you have your primary beneficiaries identified and provided for. That’s great. But your relationship status when planning your estate — past and present — may greatly impact who will be the backup beneficiaries in the unfortunate event that you survive those primary beneficiaries.
This first chart represents the results of a survey conducted on inheritance being distributed to children by marital status.
This second chart represents the results of a survey conducted on inheritance being distributed to children and a spouse or significant other.
The point? Estate planning is rarely as simple as many people believe it to be. An experienced estate planning attorney will ask the tough questions and have the hard conversations to help you create a solid, tailored estate plan for your specific needs and goals.
Every family is unique, and requires discussions regarding your particular complexities and motives to establish a fair estate plan that you are comfortable executing. Additionally, an experienced estate planning attorney understands how to craft a solid plan that will streamline the process after you pass away and ensure your loved ones can transition more smoothly — without court, costs, and conflict.
Cristin Gerczak, Esq.
Strategic Planning With Purpose®
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