This is my second marriage and my husbands also. We both have 3 ea. children. Everything we own is in our name. We have no will.

Asked about 3 years ago - Wytheville, VA

Could his kids take anything from me????

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Kevin D Quinn

    Pro

    Contributor Level 6

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . If you own everything jointly (in both names), should you predecease your husband, he will own everything. At his death his Will will determine where everything goes, (presumably to his kids, not yours). If he has no kids, his property will go to his heirs by intestacy (generally follow the blood line). Once again you kids likely won't receive anything.

    Many "blended families" establish trusts. At the first death the trust provides for the surviving spouse. Many times the surviving spouse can have broad use and control, of the deceased spouse's assets, but he the survivor does not own them. Because the 1st spouse's assets remain in the trust, she can assure what is left will provide for her children.

    If your concern regards loosing your assets to your husband's children while you are alive, how you title things is again, critical. Many joint accounts allow either joint owner to withdraw 100% of the account, without the other joint owner's permission. If your step children had a power of attorney over their father's assets it is possible (although perhaps unlikely) that the person holding the power of attorney could completely drain a joint account.

    I generally recommend that any couple in a "blended family" family, regardless of the size of the estate, seek advice from an attorney who specializes in estate planning.

    One last thing, be honest with your attorney about your concerns.

  2. Kelly M. Shovelin

    Contributor Level 13

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . The prior posts offer very sound advice. If you have concerns about how your assets will be distributed upon one of your passings, you should really contact an estate planning attorney near you to discuss the planning options that make sense for a second marriage blended family. Based upon the many dynamics in play, oftentimes revocable living trusts provide the greatest protections to ensure each spouse's planning objectives are met (including providing for one another's children from the first marriage).

    The comment provided above is intended as general information and IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE. You should consult an... more
  3. Steven J. Fromm

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . Let me put it to you another way. If you die first, he gets everything and does not have a legal obligation to give your kids anything at his death. If he dies intestate, then your family gets nothing at his second death. The point here is that joint tenancy is a bad deal to the first spouse to die's family. If you have any significant assets or just want to have a fair solution you need to get with an estates attorney to discuss the details and your respective goals. In fact, you may need separate attorneys if there is a lot at stake here or if there are any conflicts of interest that the attorney sees.

    Hope this helps. If you think this post was helpful, please check the thumbs up (helpful) tab below and/or designate my answer as best answer. Thanks.
    Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He is authorized to handle IRS matters throughout the United States. His phone number is 215-735-2336 or his email address is sjfpc@comcast.net . For further tax advice check out his website at www.sjfpc.com . and his blog at <>

    LEGAL DISCLAIMER Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law throughout the state of PA with offices in Philadelphia... more

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