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Estate planning mistakes to avoid after remarriage

On Behalf of | Jun 6, 2022 | Estate Administration & Probate, Estate Planning |

Getting remarried in Maryland is a joyous occasion for many couples and their families. However, joining two families can bring a host of problems with leaving assets to your heirs, especially if you are older.

Carefully review your estate plan

Carefully go over your estate planning documents to determine where you need to make changes. People tend to make common mistakes after remarriage regarding their assets and heirs. Such errors can lead to unintended problems and hurt feelings after your death. Watch out for the following:

  • Not changing beneficiaries on financial documents
  • Leaving your will as-is for distribution of other assets
  • Treating all heirs equally
  • Not gifting your children while you’re alive

Remarriage is also an excellent time to assess your estate plan to determine if the documents still meet your needs. While the plan may have fit your needs 20 years ago, circumstances often change during the interim, requiring a different distribution of assets. The addition of a new spouse complicates matters further.

Avoiding estate difficulties

Not changing your estate planning documents can result in considerable difficulties for your heirs. Some of your assets may have to go through probate, or heirs may contest your will if you don’t have proper estate administration in place. By carefully reviewing your documents, you can make appropriate changes that will allow your spouse to benefit from your assets if he or she survives you and then pass on assets to your family members.

In addition, make sure that you also have a health care directive and a durable power of attorney. Designating these essential documents will also help protect your estate.