Marriage can be difficult. And it can be just as difficult the second time around when you blend families. You love your new spouse, but you want to provide for your children from your first marriage. You want to make sure that, no matter what happens, your children are taken care of the way you promised yourself they would be. This time, you’re doing it right.
A holistic approach to estate planning meets your unique needs. “Legacy Planning” does not abandon traditional estate planning techniques, but incorporates them into a new paradigm that acknowledges there’s more to your financial well-being than taxes—and more to life than money.
Legacy Planning ensures that you pass on what is most important to you, including your thoughts and values, and, of course, your financial assets. It also ensures that your financial assets are not just passed to whom you wish, but also in the manner required to suit your family’s individual needs. It can be especially useful for blended families.
One of the tools in Legacy Planning is the Family Wealth Trust. This trust can be an effective tool to manage your assets during life and accomplish your goals at death. With a Family Wealth Trust you can leave assets for your surviving spouse and children and ensure that the surviving spouse cannot alter the eventual division that you have pre-set. At your spouse’s death, the assets can pass down to your children with one of two different protection levels: the Family Access Trust or the Family Sentry Trust.
The Family Access Trust protects your child’s inheritance from their own possible divorce by keeping the assets separate and prevents commingling of those assets with the marital assets. However, the child, once at a pre-determined age, will have full access to the assets, hence the name of the trust. This may be perfect for the financially savvy, mature child.
The Family Sentry Trust offers an additional level of protection. In addition to divorce protection, it provides creditor protection and management. Your child will not have unfettered access; instead the inheritance is kept and used for their benefit at the discretion of the person you designate.
Whichever level of protection you choose for your children, you can make sure that they are still protected and will benefit by the warmth of your love… and planning.
Morrison Law Group, PLC has devoted its practice to estate planning and elder law matters for more than 17 years and has been a Member of the American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys since 2017. Morrison Law Group, PLC is one of only three firms in Louisiana to be admitted to Academy Membership. The firm has helped thousands of clients meet their estate planning goals and pass on lasting legacies to their loved ones. To learn more about how you can achieve your estate planning goals, please call (504) 831-2348 or visit our website at www.morrisonlawplc.com.