Divorce and remarriage in America is a common occurrence these days. If you are planning to be remarried in the near future, and have assets and/or children from a previous relationship that will be part of your new blended family, then you have likely given a considerable amount of thought to how to create a harmonious blended family. The issue of how to address your finances once you are remarried is an important issue that should be resolved long before you actually walk down the isle. Along with deciding how you and your future spouse will handle day to day money matters, you should also discuss how your estate plans will change once you are married.
Some assets you may wish to keep separate even after marriage. Assets such as family heirlooms or inheritance money that you feel should be left to any pre-existing children in the event of your death may be better off left separate and distinct from assets that you choose to combine with your new spouse. You should also be very clear in your estate plan what you wish to happen to those assets upon your death.
Other assets, however, may be better suited to co-mingling with your new spouse. By converting financial accounts or titles to jointly held, or pay on death accounts, your new spouse would have almost immediate access to those accounts in the event of your death instead of having to wait for the probate process to terminate. Be sure to talk to your estate planning attorney to find out what the benefits and drawbacks will be to converting accounts and titles before deciding to do so.
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