Divorce and Successive Marriage

Second Marriages Checklist

Affirm all wills, trusts and beneficiary designations to ensure they have been changed after divorce

Determine if property agreements impact ability to wealth in second marriage

Think through who will be best fiduciary balance family interests with co-fiduciaries having one adult child from each spouse

Carefully review powers afforded agent in powers of attorney that could change the intent of the
estate plan, such as ability to change beneficiaries on IRAs

Consider benefit of 'sunlight' by requiring disclosure to all adult children of parents' estate plan while they are alive, and after they die
Conduct with counsel family meetings to confront conflict while both spouse are alive

Consider a requirement that a surviving spouse sign a prenuptial if remarriage to avoid disruption of the estate plan

Use a personal property memorandum to affirmatively transfer jewelry, art, sliver, and other tangible pesonal property

Otherwise, use a lottery system or other equitable manner for the division of art, jewlry and like the decedent's children

Lifetime gifts also obviate this legacy problem

Use marital trusts to ensure the estate plan is not changed after the death of the first spouse

Unitrusts may provide a balance between surviving spouse and the decedent children's property rights