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Estate planning for stepfamilies

Estate planning for stepfamilies can be challenging - but it does not have to be a difficult or impossible task.

There are certain considerations that must be made to account for the unique nature of a blended stepfamily. Working with an experienced estate planning attorney can help demystify the process, and ensure that your estate plan accounts for your goals and wishes.

An estate plan can be customized to meet the unique needs for pretty much any family situation. This will allow an individual to name beneficiaries - which may include naming stepchildren or other family members in a will.

In blended family situations, it is possible to inadvertently leave children or stepchildren out of a will. It is possible for former spouses to be included in a will. There are so many reasons not to leave estate planning to chance.

What if I don't create an estate plan?

Avoiding creating an estate plan does not help matters. Approximately 55 percent of Americans have no estate plan. When someone dies intestate - that is, without a will - the state determines how an estate will be divided. Typically in this situation, a surviving spouse will be favored. Stepchildren may not.

In the absence of a will, the state takes over. To ensure that you keep control (and not the state), you should work with an attorney to build a customized estate plan suited to your unique needs.

If you have questions about building an estate plan that meets your unique family's needs, please call the law firm of Korshak & Associates, P.A., at 407-680-1471.

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