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How to avoid disinheriting children in a blended family

In the United States, about 16 percent of all children live in a blended family, explains Healthline. This statistic does not constitute families with adult children or those who do not live within the blended family.

If you remarry after the dissolution of your first marriage, an estate plan is crucial to prevent disinheriting your children. You may not plan to disinherit the children from the first marriage but it can happen when you do not have an estate plan.

The dilemma of dying without a will

If you die without a will or other estate planning vehicle, then your assets may end up in the hands of the courts. This is called dying intestate, explains CNBC. To leave your estate in the hands of the court system or the state is a long, difficult process. The children and family members involved may have conflicting ideas of what your wishes were. Do you trust your family not to fight if you die without a will? Even the most amicable families can enter volatile territory after a death.

The solution to blended family estate plans

To avoid the mess of dying intestate, it helps to have an estate plan. Consider account beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and retirement accounts. Also, you can choose who you want to take control of your home. If there are items that you want to leave for specific children, be as detailed as you can in the will. Do not leave any room for interpretation. If you have minor children or children who would not benefit from a lump inheritance, you may also want to consider a trust.