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Tips for Estate Planning with an Uncooperative Spouse

Posted on in Estate Planning

Lombard estate planning attorneysThe benefits of proper estate planning cannot be overstated. Drafting a will, trust, or utilizing other estate planning documents puts you in charge of you and your family’s future in a way that nothing else can. Having a comprehensive estate plan also saves your loved ones the burden of making highly personal decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated or pass away. Many married couples, especially couples with children, recognize the importance of estate planning. However, there are some situations in which one spouse is interested in estate planning but the other spouse does not want to participate. If you are married and interested in gaining the many benefits that come with a comprehensive estate plan but your spouse is disinterested, consider the following tips.

Consider Why Your Spouse Is Not Interested in Estate Planning

Estate planning can bring up many upsetting topics. Wills and trusts deal with what happens to your property upon your death. Advance medical directives dictate how healthcare and financial decisions should be made on your behalf if you are incapacitated through illness or injury. Naming a guardian for minor children forces you to consider who you would want to raise your children if you and your spouse pass away before the children are adults. It is completely understandable that many people would want to avoid these topics – especially if they do not understand the advantages estate planning brings.

Speaking with your spouse about why he or she does not want to participate in the estate planning process may give you insight about how to help them overcome their hang-ups. It is important to remember that while estate planning does deal with unpleasant topics, the peace of mind you will gain from having your plans in place far outweighs the discomfort of facing these topics. 

Get Started Even if Your Spouse Does Not Want to Be Involved

Many people admit that the hardest part of starting a new exercise regimen is simply putting on workout clothes and driving to the gym. Similarly, the hardest part of estate planning for many people is getting started. If you are waiting for your spouse to be on board with your estate planning ideas, you could be waiting forever. Instead, go ahead and work on the estate planning steps which you can complete on your own. You have the legal authority to make decisions about your nonmarital assets without input from your spouse. Furthermore, several estate planning decisions such as choosing a power of attorney for healthcare or financial power of attorney are made on an individual basis. If you get started on the estate planning aspects you have authority to do on your own, your spouse may realize that estate planning is not as intimidating as he or she previously thought.

Contact a Lombard Estate Planning Attorney

Fortunately, you do not have to face the mystifying world of estate planning alone. Speak with a highly knowledgeable and compassionate DuPage County estate planning lawyer from A. Traub & Associates to learn about your options. Call us today at 630-426-0196 to schedule a confidential consultation to discuss your estate planning needs.

 

Sources:

https://www.fidelity.com/viewpoints/wealth-management/estate-planning-common-pitfalls

https://www.retirementwatch.com/essential-estate-planning-strategies-for-married-couples


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