It’s very common for spouses to title property they own together as ‘joint with right of survivorship.’ When one passes, the other owns the property outright. It’s simple, easy and automatic. However, it can get messy when the other joint owner isn’t your spouse.
Everyone’s heard the stories of celebrities who died without a proper estate plan in place. It’s been a hot topic in the last few years with Prince and Aretha Franklin serving as unfortunate faces of the phenomenon. However, it’s not just freewheeling entertainers.
Your will is one of the most important documents you will ever sign. However, to think that over 70% of people don’t even have a will is, indeed, quite frightening.
An issue that frequently arises is the treatment of an inheritance received by a spouse during the marriage. The basic rule is that any property received via gift or inheritance during the marriage is exempt from equitable distribution.
There are a number of reasons you may want to update your beneficiary designations on your investment accounts. Divorce might be one of them.