By: Solid Serenity Legal Solutions
Talking about finances is an important part of going into any marriage, but it takes on an even more important role when you are getting remarried. You may have more assets and may have children, remarriage has a lot more complex issues than a first marriage and there is more financial risk than first marriages between younger couples without these assets.
(1) Different Financial and Life Situations
Most people going into a first marriage are going in as financial equals, or at least close to it. That is oftentimes not the case, for subsequent marriages. Your financial situation, and life, is usually more complicated than the first time around. There can be financial inequality between the two of you to consider and there can also be a difference in priorities in where money needs to go, especially if one or both of you have children from previous marriages.
The good news is it is usually easier to have frank financial discussions before remarrying than it would be before your first marriage, as you have more experience in what is important to be discussed and have more motivation for seeing that conversation happen after experiencing the end of your previous marriage.
The most important part of having this conversation is to be direct and to give yourself plenty of time before the marriage to discuss a plan.
(2) Different Priorities
Financial planning starts out with a conversation about the bigger picture. Financial planning is about identifying priorities and setting goals.
Make time for the two of you to sit down alone and talk about what you hope to achieve over the next year, the next five years, the next decade, and so on, both as individuals and as a couple.
Your goals will be influenced by your stage of life but can include things such as starting or rebooting a career path to building a dream home to starting a family to retiring and moving overseas. This conversation will lay the foundation for the financial plans the two of you make together.
(3) Separate Assets
One way to deal with the potential financial inequality and the other financial obligations each individual has, is to have multiple accounts set up.
Maintaining individual savings and checking accounts allow for that money to stay in your hands to allow you to provide for the other obligations you have without pulling from your partner’s resources and conversely protects you from financial obligations your partner has. Still, many find it useful to also share a joint account for shared expenses that both sides contribute to so that there is not a competition to see who last paid this bill or picked up groceries.
(4) Estate Planning
You should not worry about having all of your estate planning done before the wedding because good estate planning takes time. Still, it is good to be aware of your assets and how they will be divided down the road and how remarrying will affect any current plan you have in place.
Will you need to change your plans to provide for your spouse if you pass before they do? If you have children or grandchildren, will you need to make changes to ensure that what you desire to be passed to them still will be?
Remarrying can bring about complications in your estate planning. If you are remarrying, be sure to reach out to your trusted financial and legal advisors to review and update your plans!