Estate Planning for Families with Stepchildren

June 17, 2019

By: Gideon Rothschild

Bottom Line, Inc.

Given the high incidence of second (and third) marriages nowadays, today’s families often include stepchildren. That can lead to potential conflicts in the transfer of wealth. These families, often referred to as blended families, require more complex estate planning than traditional families in order to avoid such conflicts. For example, a simple “I love you will” leaving everything to a spouse might end up with the inherited wealth going to the spouse’s children, effectively disinheriting the decedent’s own children. Although promises to take care of the decedent’s children may reflect the best of intentions, they are not guaranteed to be carried out. The surviving spouse may get remarried or have a falling out with the decedent’s children.

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