Congratulations, you’ve just remarried and you’re thrilled. Did you know that 2nd marriages are on the decline in every demographic but one? Pew Research looked at remarriages in 1960 and compared them to 2013. What they found was surprising. Whether by death or divorce, in 1960 72% of men and woman between the age 18-34 and 35-54 remarried. In 2013 just 42% of 18-34 year old’s remarry while only 60% of 35-54 year old’s. But here’s the interesting part, in 1960 only 42% of people 55 and older remarried but fast forward to 2013 and that number jumps to 57%! More seniors are remarrying than ever.
And your point?”, you ask? Remarrying means you need to re-evaluate your real estate, will or trust, IRA or annuity. When you got remarried did you change how you hold title? If not and something happens to you, your new spouse might not inherit the house. Moreover, if you don’t re-evaluate how your other assets are to be divided amongst your kids, the assets could end up all going to your new spouse and maybe that’s just how you want it.
However, what happens when she passes? Your children could find they’ve been disinherited in favor of your spouse’s children and that may not be what you wanted. Even if you have a will or a trust, if you own an IRA’s or annuities you have to designate a beneficiary. If you don’t change the beneficiary after remarrying, whoever the original beneficiary is, gets it. That could be your Ex or it could your kids and not your new spouse. It could also still be your deceased spouse and then the IRA goes into probate.
In any event, if you remarry, take a moment. Review your assets in this new context and make sure what happens to your assets after your death is how you want it.