Unless there is a prenuptial agreement stating your husband or wife gets nothing when you pass away, if you are married when you die your spouse often has several rights to your estate. Some states, such as New York, entitle your spouse to at least 1/3 of your gross estate even if you leave them nothing, and if you own property with them jointly they get all of that property when you die. And even worse, if you don’t do any estate planning your spouse may be the sole beneficiary of your estate. So if your marriage is failing I suggest that you fire the first shot at your partner and disinherit them before you file for divorce. For people
Your Wills & Trusts Should Require Your Children to Have Prenups
After you die there are way too many evil forces that can take a swipe at gifts to your children. Credit card companies may receive unpaid debts from your transfers to your children; the street level dope dealer may have his next good run with your child as his primary client; even the government may take much of the funds if your child becomes disabled. But for some reason, nothing annoys a parent more than knowing their soon-to-be-ex-son-in-law Chad is going to get a hold of your bequest to your daughter Becky (and now your son Bryce too, if that’s how he rolls, since greed has no sexual preference). All Wills and Trusts should have substance abuse provisions, spendthrift provisions
Your Prenup: How Your Family Law Attorney Betrayed You
If you have a prenuptial agreement, chances are that the family law attorney who represented you betrayed you and didn’t even realize it. I often tell clients to get a prenup if they are getting married later in life, and insist my older clients pay for their child’s prenup. And soon thereafter, much to my dismay, I see yet another prenup that unintentionally-yet-completely screws my client if his or her spouse dies unexpectedly. Prenups serve one vital purpose: “Split Money.” There is usually a financial disparity between the parties when the couple marries, so the wealthier spouse naturally wants to protect his or her money from the other spouse’s financial grasp after a short marriage. So the prenup
Second Wives: Reapers of Sorrow, Destroyers of Family Wealth!
In a world where our assets are constantly under threat from usurious taxes, government largess, financial predators and rapacious offspring, there is still NO worse threat to intergenerational family wealth than a second wife. People get married the first time for any one of a number of reasons: Family pressure, filling a void, the urge to have children, an inexplicable desire to emulate the lives of Al and Peg Bundy and passion. But these first marriages often end, sometimes with children left in their wake, and are replaced by a second marriage based on love, devotion and emotional security. In these second (or third) marriages, often one spouse tends to be significantly older and more financially secure than