I married someone with children and we have a large estate. We are working with an attorney on our wills, of course, but I'm wondering when my husband dies, what will be divided among my kids and step-kids? I'm expecting our cash and non-retirement investments to be divided as part of the estate. I'm wondering if my (adult) stepchildren will be entitled to a portion of the equity in our home, our cars, our retirement accounts, or my (minor) children's 529 education accounts. In addition, if we purchase a second home, will they inherit a portion of that? Also, what debt will I be able to pay off before dividing up the estate? Credit cards? Mortgage? Auto loans?
1 Answer from Attorneys
In a second marriage situation as yours, it is not at all unusual for husband and wife to have separate attorneys. Your husband and you may not have identical interests with respect to providing for your children. Your children, his stepchildren, have no right to inherit anything, without documentation to support such a transfer.
You need to see an attorney. You and your husband need to have legal documents that will protect all your intentions and that can't be altered after your death, in case you are the first to die. If we are convenient to you, we'd be glad to help. If not, still be sure to see someone to protect you and your children's interests.