Chicago Estate Planning Attorney
Estate Planning Tips For Non-Traditional Families
Most families don’t fall within the “Leave it to Beaver” genre, where you have two opposite-gender parents, who are in each of their first marriages, who have one or more kids, and who are healthy and thriving. In these cases, estate planning can be fairly simple, but most families aren’t the perfect nuclear family. Whether you are in a same-sex marriage or relationship, you have children but not a spouse, or you have some other “non-traditional” family, as is the case with millions of families right here in Illinois, then your estate planning procedures may be a little different.
Today, traditions are changing but estate planning laws can sometimes lag behind. As such, when planning for your estate, it can be helpful to get the legal representation of Chicago estate planning attorney James C. Provenza. With years of experience working with thousands of families, both traditional and non-traditional, our estate planning law office has the tools and legal insight to help you create a strong, secure, and beneficial estate plan.
In the meantime, we’ve included 3 estate planning tips for the non-traditional family below.
Estate Planning for Blended Families
When two divorced partners come together to form a new family, there are many estate issues that often arise. This is especially true when one side of the family is bringing substantial wealth to the other part of the family.
One of the major estate planning concerns in this case involves providing for your own children from the previous marriage. If this is you, you may want to consider setting up a revocable living trust. A revocable trust limits the authority of the new spouse over the entire estate, while also preserving a portion of the estate for the children of the previous marriage.
Other blended family issues include adoption and proving for stepchildren. Additionally, spouses in a second marriage may maintain separate financial accounts and are less financially integrated than they were in the first marriage.
Estate Planning for Individuals With Wealth
Many divorced individuals come from situations where the other partner took care of the bulk of the financial responsibility. In addition to the estate planning tips for blended families, divorced individuals with wealth should also look at your independent needs. These needs will be important when determining the appointees will be for legal documents such as the Durable Power of Attorney, Advance Healthcare Directive, and Guardianship Declarations.
Estate Planning for Same-Sex Couples
With the passing of same-sex marriage in the United States, same-sex couples can take advantage of Federal estate tax benefits. Mention federal and state estate tax benefits here.
The same challenges mentioned for blended families also apply to same-sex couples, and there is always the possibility for a conflict of interests when planning your estate.
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In addition to the above-mentioned tips, you should also consider:
- Giving your partner rights (but not giving the new spouse too many rights)
- Talking about a pre-nup
- Using various trusts
- Putting your goals first, and estate planning second
No matter your family situation and its associated circumstances, one of the best tools you have for a solid estate plan is an experienced Chicago estate planning attorney. At James C. Provenza & Associates, we are your personal advocates and legal representatives, and we have the experience and legal know-how to help you navigate the complex waters of estate planning in Illinois. To speak with attorney Provenza, call us today at (847) 729-3939.