As a Florida senior, did you know that if you are planning to remarry, you should either create or update your estate plan. There are three important issues in regard to your estate planning and remarriage that you may need to understand and discuss with your future spouse. In addition, you should have a Florida attorney with experience in estate planning and remarriage who can help ensure that the wishes of you and your spouse are protected and will be carried out.
1. Your estate plan will allow you to protect your children from your previous marriage. Children from a former marriage are a very sensitive and important subject in estate planning. With a good estate plan both parties can be sure that their children from prior marriages are protected in the event that their parent dies and is survived by the new spouse. Without appropriate estate planning in place, you can imagine a scenario where one spouse with children from a prior marriage dies and, after inheriting the entire estate, the surviving spouse disinherits those children by leaving everything only to the natural born children of the surviving spouse.
2. Your estate plan will allow you to protect your new spouse. Protecting your new spouse is essential in your new or updated estate plan so that the new spouse is protected after the remarriage. If, after remarriage, one spouse dies before updating his or her will and beneficiary designations to include his or her new spouse, it is possible the new spouse is left without the inheritance his or her spouse wanted. For example, if the life insurance policy was not updated to replace the ex-spouse’s name with the current spouse’s name, it is possible the life insurance proceeds will be paid to the ex-spouse.
3. Your estate plan will allow you to protect your health care wishes. The final issue regarding estate planning is the importance of having an advanced health care directive and/or living will in place. Unfortunately, remarriage can increase the possibility that there will be some internal disagreements within the family as to the medical decisions being made by one spouse when the other is incapacitated. With the appropriately drafted and signed legal documents, spouses can communicate their specific wishes regarding healthcare decisions and medical treatment and eliminate the potential for conflict.
If you have remarried or are planning to remarry, our office can help you reevaluate your estate plan to reflect your change in life circumstances. At David H. Jacoby Elder Law Advocate, P. A., we are focused on providing thorough, ethical, and timely solutions for our clients and their loved ones. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting with us.