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Estate planning important for all families in New York

When a man and a woman have a baby in New York, putting together a will often is the last thing they want to do. After all, they are consumed with other urgent life demands, or they simply don't want to be bothered with an activity that seems so morbid. The complexity of the process also may deter some individuals from wanting to engage in estate planning -- especially those with blended families. However, wills are typically essential in any family situation, helping to protect one's assets and pass them down to the right beneficiaries in the event of the person's death.

Both parties in a married couple may opt to create wills in which they leave all assets to the surviving spouse. Then, once the second spouse dies, the assets could be distributed to the children. However, it is worth noting that, even after a will has been created, either spouse certainly has the right to change his or her will at any time.

A trust is another helpful estate planning tool. Creating a trust typically is the best estate-planning option for blended families. A trust ensures that a spouse is taken care of, and it also protects one's assets for children in addition to offering some tax advantages. If a beneficiary is not fiscally responsible, a trust can actually keep him or her from accessing all of his or her inheritance at once as well.

Estate planning indeed can be complex, requiring an individual to make tough decisions regarding which family members will get certain assets if he or she dies. However, failure to create a will or trust means that the state will end up deciding how these assets will be distributed in such a situation. Taking time to develop a will enables an individual to retain control of how his or her property is distributed when he or she passes away in New York.

Source: postcrescent.com, Estate planning for blended families can get complicated, Carissa Giebel, Jan. 31, 2014

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