Now more than ever, same-sex couples have the same rights as heterosexual couples, and this includes when it comes to estate planning. Just like everyone else, same-sex couples should have their affairs in order to protect the ones they love after they're gone. Here are three considerations same-sex couples should keep in mind to initiate the idea of making an estate plan.
1. Making Sure Assets Transition In Accordance to Your Wishes
Unfortunately, same-sex couples are not always supported by family members. When it comes to making sure assets are distributed the way you want them, that may end up excluding certain family members who are not supportive of your relationship. When an estate plan is in place, you can determine who your assets go to, therefore the court won't have to make that decision and give certain assets to family members who you may not be close to.
2. Identifying Powers of Attorneys
Same-sex couples may face more challenges than heterosexual couples when it comes to not having a power of attorney identified. This not only includes a medical power of attorney, but it's critical to have other powers of attorneys retained including a durable financial power of attorney, a general power of attorney, a limited power of attorney, and a springing power of attorney. Having people with these responsibilities solidified ahead of time will leave little room for anyone to question who you wanted to make decisions for you in a time where you could not.
3. Planning Ahead for Your Children
Many same-sex couples choose to have children where one person is the biological parent of the child. In this scenario, and any scenario where kids are involved, it's imperative for couples to choose who they want to raise their children should the parents pass away while the kids are still young. In a will, you can specify who you would like to take legal guardianship of your children at the time of your passing. If a will is not in place, then the court has to make a guess as to where the children should stay and it may not be where you had hoped.
Don't let a court make decisions for you and your partner. At Law Offices of Maria N. Jonsson, PC we have made thousands of estate plans for individuals and couples each tailored to fit their needs. You never know what tomorrow could bring, so it's best to have an estate plan in place now. Contact us today to get started — (424) 383-8445.