Traditional estate planning may not serve today’s families

The structure of today’s families is not as cut-and-dry as it used to be. Numerous Nevada couples were married before and/or have children from a prior relationship. As a result, traditional estate planning most likely will not meet the desires and goals of an individual.

The traditional path of succession after one spouse dies is to leave everything to the surviving spouse and/or the children borne of that marriage. Without a will, an individual’s estate may pass in this manner despite the wishes of the decedent. Therefore, providing for children of a prior relationship, along with a current partner, children or a spouse, requires the use of estate planning documents such as a will and/or trusts, if desired.

Trusts can be particularly useful to make sure that everyone involved is cared for after death. Certain assets can be set aside for the benefit of children, which will be disbursed in accordance with the provisions of the trust. This gives the creator of the trust the ability to determine when and how the beneficiary or beneficiaries will receive the assets of the trust. In some cases, the parties may put all of their assets into trust during life. When one party passes away, the other continues to receive benefits from the assets.

Regardless of a Nevada individual’s goals when engaging in estate planning, a plan can most likely be developed to fulfill his or her wishes. Wills and trusts are documents that can be tailored to a person’s family circumstances. In order to receive the full benefits of these documents, it may be beneficial to enlist the assistance of someone who understands the complexities of estate law.

Source: elderlawanswers.com, “5 Estate Planning Tips for the Non-Traditional Family (Which Probably Means Yours)“, Jan. 27, 2015

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