Forbes Article: 6 Estate Planning Tips For Blended Families

Written By: Christine Fletcher

Remember the Brady Bunch television show that extolled the joys and challenges of blended families? Mike and Carol Brady were the iconic blended family, each bringing 3 children into the marriage and raising them as one big happy family. I wonder what their estate planning looked like. Did Mike leave everything to Carol outright on his death, knowing that she would treat all 6 children equally and not favor her 3 girls over his 3 boys? 

We like to think that Carol would “do the right thing,” but what if she didn’t? What if she never liked Mike’s boys and decided to leave everything to Marcia, Jan and Cindy? That fun 60s style home and the fruits of Mike’s architectural career would pass only to her children, while omitting Mike’s biological children. It happens a lot. The surviving spouse disinherits her stepchildren. Sometimes it is intentional and deceptive from the start. Carol never really liked those boys. Any affection for them was an act, put on for Mike’s benefit. She always knew she would cut them out if given the opportunity…

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