If you are in your second, third or subsequent marriage and have children have one or more previous relationships, you may feel torn between the needs of your current spouse and those of your children. It is not uncommon for children from a previous relationship to dislike and/or quarrel with a stepparent. This is especially true in matters of inheritance. People can fight quite viciously if they believe they are not receiving what they believe they are owed. If you require help with estate planning, please read on, then contact an experienced Rockland County will attorney to learn some quick facts about subsequent marriages and estate planning in New York.

How do you account for subsequent marriages while estate planning in New York?

Naturally, you would like to minimize or eliminate any acrimony or quarreling between your current spouse and your children from prior relationships in the event of your passing. As difficult as that sounds, it might be easier to achieve than you would think. First and foremost, you should seriously consider reaching out to a skilled Rockland County wills, trusts and estates attorney to discuss how to ease inheritance worries. Together, you should create a trust that includes the following stipulations:

  • Your current spouse will be your life beneficiary for the assets of the trust
  • Your children from your prior relationship will be the final beneficiaries of the trust assets

With such a trust in place, your spouse will have the right to use the property in the trust, with certain restrictions, for the remainder of his or her life. He or she will be prevented from giving the property in the trust to anyone else, even your spouse’s children from previous relationships. After your spouse passes, your children will automatically inherit the property in the trust. This is also true if your current spouse dies before you. In which case, no adjustments need to be made to the trust.

How can a New York estate planning attorney help you account for subsequent marriages?

Your trust will have to be as specific and comprehensive as possible in order to achieve an orderly and civil transition in the event of your passing. You probably want to ensure your spouse lives comfortably for the rest of his or her life, but you can and should place restrictions on what he or she may do with the property in the trust. A qualified legal professional will help you draft provisions such as whether your spouse can rent the property, how he or she uses the income from rent and who is responsible for maintenance and taxes on the property. You will have many factors to consider, so please give us a call to help account for the most pressing.

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The Lauterbach Law Firm is proud to serve clients throughout Rockland County who are faced with legal matters related to estate planning, real estate, foreclosure defense, landlord-tenant law, business law, and criminal defense. If you require the services of an experienced team of attorneys, contact The Lauterbach Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.