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March 2019 Archives

Welcoming a child? Consider your estate planning options

Expanding your family is likely a dream that you have had for some time. Now that you are expecting a baby or are close to completing the adoption process, you may feel that excitement mounting more than ever. Of course, while thinking about bringing more life and love to your family is wonderful, you may also want to consider planning for the possibility of less-happy events.

Talking to your child about an absent parent

Not all divorced parents share custody of their children. For a variety of reasons, your co-parent may have little or no contact with your child. Perhaps there were issues with drugs, alcohol or violence that have made it unsafe and unhealthy for your child to be around them. Your co-parent may have moved far away and chosen not to be part of your child's life other than to provide court-ordered financial support.

Cryonics requires new ways of thinking about estate plans

It sounds like something from a science fiction movie. The heroes blast into the future where they will tackle new challenges, but because of the long voyage, their lives must be scientifically suspended, like pressing a pause button. However, it is not so far-fetched. More and more people are considering cryonics as a way of preserving their bodies at the end of their lives until such time as medical and scientific advancements have cured whatever ended their lives, even old age.

Some keys to effective co-parenting communication

Effective communication is key for parents after divorce. This can be challenging if the two of you got into negative habits in the last stages of your marriage. Further, you may still have some anger and distrust that can prevent you from communicating positively and clearly with your co-parent. For your children's sake, however, it's essential to focus on the building blocks of healthy, effective communication.

Planning for spring break as divorced (or divorcing) parents

Scheduling time off of work and planning activities (whether at home or away) around spring break can be challenging enough for married parents. For divorced parents who both want to spend time with their kids during their time off school, it can be particularly difficult. Schools may not schedule spring break for the same week every year. Different schools, even within the same area, may not have the same spring break weeks. Therefore, parents may have kids with different weeks off.

Don't be a Picasso: Avoid estate planning pitfalls

You'd likely agree with most Arizona residents who might say they'd love to own an estate worth $30 million or more. That's approximately how much the great master Pablo Picasso's estate was worth when he died in 1973. The only problem was that he never executed an estate plan. If you don't want your loved ones to have to navigate a lengthy probate process, you'll want to keep several ideas in mind to help them avoid it.

Understanding spousal and survivor Social Security benefits

Increasingly, people are choosing to divorce in their senior years rather than live what may be decades more in unhappy, loveless marriages. For women who left the workforce to raise children and perhaps never resumed full-time careers, the prospect of how they're going to get by financially on their own -- even with spousal support -- may be frightening. What happens if their ex-spouse dies and the spousal support ends?

What's involved in keeping the family home after divorce?

If you're a homeowner who's divorcing, what to do with the family home can be one of the biggest and most emotional decisions you're likely to make during the process. If you have children, it may be particularly important for the parent who'll have the kids most of the time to remain in the home to minimize the changes required of the kids. Staying put can mean they're able to remain in their schools, stay close with their friends and participate in their extracurricular groups.

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