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Can your children lose their inheritance if you remarry?

On Behalf of | Dec 12, 2022 | Estate Planning |

Life may not always pan out as you expect. For example, your marriage could end in divorce, or the love of your life could die. It’s natural for you to feel lonely after divorce or the death of your spouse, and it’s normal to yearn for companionship.

You’re most fortunate if you’re lucky enough to find love again. However, remarrying can be complicated, especially if you had children in your previous marriage. If you do have children, remarrying can have some implications on the inheritance you intend to leave to them. For this reason, it’s crucial that you review and update your estate plan to protect your children’s interests.

Here are a few steps to safeguard your children’s inheritance.

Give your children their inheritance directly

A simple way to protect your children’s inheritance when remarrying is to create writing instructions. There are a few ways you can do this, including:

  • Gifting them in your will.
  • Making them beneficiaries of assets that can’t be governed by a will, such as IRAs, insurance policies and 401(K)s.
  • Giving them their inheritance while you’re still alive.

Create a trust for your children

Usually, spouses have strong inheritance rights. Therefore, even if you don’t create or update your last will to give them all your assets, the court may assign most of them to your spouse after you die. However, you can protect your children’s inheritance by creating a trust. 

By creating a trust for your children, you’ll ensure that there are money and assets for your spouse to use after you pass on. Your children can then receive the remainder after the death of your spouse. However, it’s essential to consider the language you use when creating a trust, especially if it covers your spouse’s long-term care. Your spouse may deplete the trust, so your children will not get anything.

Good planning can protect your legacy for your children 

When it comes to protecting your children’s inheritance, it’s crucial that you create an estate plan. A good estate plan will help ensure that both your spouse and kids get something at the end of the day. Having legal guidance will help you to do this appropriately.