Death, Divorce, Second Marriages, Stepchildren, and Blended Families
Serving Clients in Dayton, Cincinnati and Throughout Central and Southern Ohio
At Craig T. Matthews & Associates, LPA, we see this situation arise all too often.
The death of a spouse is commonly followed with a second marriage by the widow or widower, regardless of how the children of the first marriage may feel about the matter. The second marriage can result in additional children. This is the "blended family." Stepmothers, stepfathers, half brothers, half sisters, stepbrothers and stepsisters: all have been getting to know each other for time immemorial. And the rising divorce rate in modern society is increasing the number of blended families.
Blended families can present unique estate planning goals, and create unique opportunities for the disruption of those goals. Here is an example. A well to do mom and dad are happily married and have three beautiful girls. Then mom dies, and her considerable estate is inherited by dad. The grieving dad tells his girls, "I am setting aside the money that belonged to mom. I may need it when I get older, but I hope not to. And when I die, I want the three of you to have it." Fast forward thirty years. Dad has married stepmother, who was considerably younger. And dad and stepmother had a son together.