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Helping Create your path

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Photo of the legal team at Bristle Law, PLLC

Helping Create your path

to a better tomorrow

Handling estate planning if you have a blended family in Virginia

On Behalf of | Sep 17, 2022 | Estate Planning & Wills

When you get married and have children from a previous relationship, it’s a good idea to re-review your existing estate plan in Virginia. You’ll need to take certain considerations into account to ensure your assets are properly distributed according to your wishes.

Update your will

If you have a will, you’ll need to update it to reflect your new family situation, as not doing so could lead to major mistakes. This means—should you choose to do so—adding your new spouse and any step-children to the document and evaluating if you want to make any other changes. Also, be sure to name a guardian for your children in case something happens to you and your spouse.

Create a trust

Consider creating a trust if you have significant assets. There are many benefits for doing so, including determining the stipulations for how and when beneficiaries receive your money. Depending on the trust you choose, you could always go back and change the terms if circumstances change.

Review your beneficiary designations

Your will doesn’t control everything. For instance, retirement accounts and life insurance policies typically have their own beneficiary designation forms. Review each policy to determine if you want to change them to reflect the new family structure; chances are you don’t want your ex-spouse getting your life insurance proceeds instead of your new spouse or children.

Regularly review your estate plan

Your family situation may change over time, so it’s important to regularly review your estate plan. As your children get older, you may want to update your guardianship arrangements, or as your assets grow, you may need to make changes to minimize taxes and maximize asset protection.

It can be a great feeling to plan for your family’s future. With a little extra planning and careful consideration, you can have an estate plan in place for which you’re comfortable.

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