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Hooper Law Office,LLC Estate Planning Blog

Monday, August 24, 2015

What other protections do I need to consider in a second marriage?

There is no "one size fits all" set of estate planning protections that is appropriate for all people at all times. You are unique, your loved ones are unique, the assets you own are unique, and the goals you have for how you want to protect your loved ones and property are unique. The combination of all of these factors is why, if you are entering a second marriage, it is important to assemble your estate planning team of professionals (estate planning attorney, accountant, financial planner, and insurance professional) and discuss your goals with the team. This allows them to analyze your situation and advise you concerning the particular provisions your need to have in place for your personal situation. You should be prepared to review, discuss, and receive their counsel concerning the following: 

  • The assets owned by both you and your spouse;
  • Your respective investments philosophies;
  • A careful review of each spouse's beneficiary designations to make sure that outdated decisions will not cause unintended consequences;
  • The goals you and your new spouse are trying to accomplish for yourselves, for your children from previous marriages, and for any children of the new marriage;
  • The advisability of having a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement to classify your property;
  • The importance of having new heath care and financial powers of attorney to appoint appropriate individuals to carry our your directions;
  • An analysis of retirement plans and Social Security benefits to maximize available income for the two of you during your joint lifetimes and to provide for the surviving spouse;
  • How Family Trusts and QTIP (Qualified Terminable Interest Property)

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