Dear Liza: I am writing my first Will. I have two children with my current husband. He has one surviving child from his first marriage. I don't want her to receive anything if my husband dies before I do, I just want my two kids to inherit what I leave behind. I am not sure what to do? I think that the best thing to do in a situation like this is for your Will to be super clear. Name your children with your husband. State that he has a daughter from his previous marriage. Then make sure that your Will says that you have not adopted this child, do not have a parent/child relationship with her and that she is not to be considered a child for purposes of your Will, but that this term should only apply to your two, mutual children. Better to say this in the Will itself and not rely on anything separate from it, since things like that can get lost. If you are using software to do this Will, only list your two children. Usually you can add a new paragraph on your own, somewhere, to acknowledge this unadopted step-daughter and clarify your wishes with respect to her. If the software won't let you do this, see a lawyer who can draft just what you need.
About This Blog
Estate Planning for Families of All Ages.
Barbara P. Wright & Liza Hanks
- Nolo’s Small Business Legal Blog
- Nolo's Bankruptcy & Foreclosure Blog
- Dear Rich: Nolo's Patent, Copyright & Trademark Blog
- Nolo's Fundraising Tips for Busy Nonprofits
- Queer Justice: Nolo's LGBT Law Blog
- The Rap Sheet: Nolo's Criminal Law Blog
- The Sharing Solution Blog
- Nolo's Legal Marketing Blawg
- Nolo's Employment Law Blog
- Retire Happy
- Nolo's Real Estate Advice for Home Buyers & Sellers
- Nolo's Divorce, Custody & Family Law Blog
- Ask Liza: Everyday Estate Planning
- Nolo's Personal Injury Blog
- Nolo's Tax Law Tips
- What Price Justice?
- Nolo's Lawyer Blog
- LLC & Corporation Small Talk
- The Law Reform Soapbox
- Legal Humor Blog
- About Estate Planning
- American Bar Association - Estate Planning Answers
- Death and Taxes Blog
- Estate Planning - Retirement on Yahoo! Personal Finance
- Estate Planning Bits
- Estate Planning Practice Blog
- FindLaw - Estate Planning, Wills, & Trusts
- Money 101
- Money 101 - Lesson 21: Estate Planning
- Smartmoney.com - Estate Planning: Personal Finance
- Wikipedia - Estate Planning
- Wills & Estate Planning Resource Center
- Wills, Trusts, & Estates Prof Blog
May 31, 2011 Madame Clark-Reclusive Heiress to Huge Fortune Dies at 104 Estate planning in the news. This week, Huguette Marcelle Clark, heiress to her father's copper...
May 29, 2011 Joint Accounts and the Estate Tax Dear Liza: If I have all of my $ assets (savings accounts, money market...
May 24, 2011 Did My Mom Have a Valid Trust? Dear Liza, My mother passed away last year. She had a living trust prepared in January...
April 21, 2011 Does a Living Trust protect against creditors? Dear Liza: My wife is in the middle of her medical residency. With the...
April 18, 2011 When does it make sense to do a Living Trust? Dear Liza: We are a young family with significant debt and very little in...
April 13, 2011 Your Husband's Debts--the Gift that Keeps on Giving Dear Liza: My brother died recently. He owned community property with his Wife. Is...