There are many complicated facets of estate planning that arise when marrying someone in mid-life. Keeping financial secrets and refusing to share your financial history with your partner could set you both up for problems in the future.
Furthermore, a mid-life marriage, including a second or third marriage, requires upfront honesty about both of your individual financial situations and how your marriage can impact your estate planning.
One 2020 creditcards.com survey of over 2500 adults in relationships found that nearly half of respondents were hiding a savings, checking or credit card account from their partner. Up to 57% of millennials, 37% of baby boomers, and 45% of GenX-ers had deceived their partners financially. This form of financial infidelity could be very problematic should the other person find out about it and could add to an increasing layer of complexity.
When joining your finances with a mid-life partner, consider a discussion with a CPA and other financial professionals.
If you already have retirement accounts and estate planning details set up for you personally, this information should be discussed with your new spouse. It’s a different strategy to go from creating all of this information on your own to reflect your individual needs to moving it over to combined finances and estate planning.
Updating all of your key documents, including your beneficiary designation forms, should come at the top of your priority list.
If you’re stuck on how to get started and need more advice, set up a time to speak with a trusted estate planning lawyer who can guide you through which parts of your estate plan need to be updated and how to consider some of the complexities of combining interests and finances in a later-in-life marriage.