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Estate planning for blended families

Wealth Protection Partner, Nina Sperring discusses the importance of effective estate planning for blended families

Nina Sperring

by Nina Sperring

calendar_month 1 May 24

schedule 2 min read

In today’s society, blended families have become increasingly commonplace, with new relationships often creating new familial links between parents/step-parents, children and their wider families. With this in mind, estate planning aligned to personal family circumstances has become more critical than ever before.

Here, Wealth Protection specialist, Nina Sperring, discusses key insights into navigating blended family estate planning.

The Intestacy Rules

When considering family inheritance and your wishes, it is essential to note that if someone passed away without a Will in place, then the estate will pass in accordance with the Intestacy Rules and there is no chain of inheritance in relation to unmarried couples and step-children/parents, unless a formal adoption has taken place.

During an already difficult and distressing time, this can potentially lead to disputes and unrest, particularly if this does not align with what is believed to be the deceased’s wishes, or indeed where financial support has been provided to step-children during their lifetime.

Protecting Your Loved Ones

One of the main reasons to make a Will as a blended family is to protect your loved ones. Without a Will, your assets may not be distributed in the way you would have wanted, which can lead to disputes and financial insecurity for your family members.

The use of trusts can also be a key estate planning tool for blended families, enabling increased protection of loved ones, due to greater control over how and when assets are distributed. For those who wish to provide for a partner during their lifetime, before an estate ultimately passes to their children/step-children, trusts can be used to create the necessary legal structure.

Minimising Potential Liabilities

In addition to ensuring your estate passes in line with your wishes, and to your intended beneficiaries, effective estate planning can also assist in ensuring that steps are taken to minimise the amount of tax that may be due on transfer of assets to your beneficiaries.

Preventing Family Disputes

Blended families can sadly be more susceptible to family disputes, especially when it comes to inheritance. Detailed estate planning can help prevent misunderstandings and conflicts among family members after your passing. This can provide peace of mind and reassurance to all members of the family.

If you would like to speak to a member of the Wealth Protection team to discuss estate planning for you and your family, please contact WealthProtection@psg-law.co.uk or call 03333 058375.

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