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Wills, your children and step-children

(83 Posts)
BloomingDaisy Wed 25-Aug-10 11:57:30

Dear MNs, Can I ask a personal question? Its my first ever post so please be gentle.

My DH and I are currently having 'discussions' about our wills.

He has one DC from his previous marriage and our first DC together is due early next year.

How have you and your partner set up your wills to take DC and DSC into account?

I'd really appreciate some views.

mjinhiding Wed 25-Aug-10 13:44:15

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BoojaB Wed 25-Aug-10 13:51:34

I'd like to read people's advice on this too. DP and I aren't married, so I think Wills are very important.

He has a 16 year old from a previous relationship, and we have a two year old together.

The subject of Wills came up at his parents' house, and they presumed that our Wills would 'mirror' each others. I'm really annoyed at this. The 16 year old isn't mine, so why would I leave him dosh? He has a mother who can make provision for him.

It doesn't help that our solicitor is DP's cousin. When we bought our house together the solicitor commented that (as DP was putting more money in than me), that we should protect his investment in case we split-up. I was eight months pregnant at the time - I'd say that was a pretty big investment!

Anyway, sorry, I feel like I've crashed your thread with my problems! I hope someone can offer advice...

mjinhiding Wed 25-Aug-10 13:59:48

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mjinhiding Wed 25-Aug-10 14:03:49

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BoojaB Wed 25-Aug-10 14:04:18

mjinhiding, I wish I had.

In fact, I've just told DP that when we draw-up our Wills, I don't want his cousin to be involved.

He (the cousing)even talked to DP's parents about our house purchase and how much money I was contributing. So unprofessional. Nobody else seems to appreciate this though!

nymphadora Wed 25-Aug-10 14:04:35

We are re-doing ours tomorrow. We currently have it set up that my dds inherit my half but dh has right to reside. He doesn't have any kids so his goes to me then my dds.

Im currently pg so we are changing wills to represent that (and other changes). Not 100% how its going but looking at 1/3 each

Shodan Wed 25-Aug-10 14:05:49

Although we haven't actually finished getting our wills done yet (note to self :get this done) our situation is as follows.

I have ds1 (14) from my first marriage. His father and family have virtually abandoned him and even if they hadn't, they would have nothing to leave him.

So, in my joint will with DH, if we both die before both dss reach 18, the first third of our estate will be set aside for their guardians to use towards their upbringing, but mainly towards the costs of ds2's education. (Ds2 is only 2 atm so has many years, if not of private education, than school trips, books etc etc). The remaining two thirds of the estate is divided equally between the two of them. There will be atrust fund set up for them.

If DH and I die after they both reach the age of 18, both boys inherit equally. There is only one small difference and that is a (quite) valuable stamp collection which will have been handed down from DH's father, to whcih DH has added, and that goes to ds2.

This is, I think, extremely generous of DH, bearing in mind that we are only in the position we are in financially because of his situation before I met him. However he said very early on in our relationship that he wanted to take ds1 on completely and that included all financial considerations.

BloomingDaisy Wed 25-Aug-10 14:10:36

Hi MJ, Its really worrying me and as you say its so complicated. A really easy way to start a row between DH and I.

I've only met DSD once (she lives on the other side of the world) so its just not appropriate for her to inherit anything from me.

But unless I don't leave anything to DH and leave it all to the DC on its way and any others, there is not much I can do about this. I cannot afford the solicitors fees to set up a complex will.

DH says I have to trust him to do what's right by the DCs and DSD if I die first. But he doesn't even understand my point of view on leaving the family home 100% to me so I am very reluctant to do this.

At the moment, it would go partly to me and partly to DSD. I'd have to sell up to give her the cash and wouldn't be able to affaord to buy anything else where we live.

BloomingDaisy Wed 25-Aug-10 14:16:21

Oh lordy. I hadn't even thought about what to do with what my parents might leave me. Definitely would want to make sure it stayed with my own DCs.

Jaquelinehyde Wed 25-Aug-10 14:29:37

I feel very, very sorry for those of you who are struggling with this.

I am both a step-child and a step-mum and could not imagine ever being in a position where children are dealt with differently.

My parents will split anything they leave (which will be next to nothing) between all children and grandchildren equally regardless of who they biologically belong to.

The same goes for my children (step or otherwise) I would never make one child feel more worthy of inheritance than the other. The thought of that just makes me feel sick.

The only reason I would limit inheritance would be if a child's behaviour had been disgraceful. However, this would be the same for step children and biological children.

If dp decided he was going to give his dc's more than mine then I think we would be over, I wouldn't put up with Grandparents doing anything like it either.

mjinhiding Wed 25-Aug-10 14:54:31

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mjinhiding Wed 25-Aug-10 14:58:04

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Petal02 Wed 25-Aug-10 15:42:33

I don't have children, but my husband has a son from his first marriage, and he pays maintenance because of this. When we drew up our wills, my husband and I have left everything each to each other (if one of us dies). If we both die together, our estate will be split 50/50, half to his side of the family, and half to mine.

But we were advised that until husband's son reaches 18, he is classed as a legal dependent, and that unless we made provision to cover the remaining maintenance payments, my husband's ex could claim against the estate on her son's behalf. So we took out a life insurance policy, that would pay out sufficient to cover maintennace, in the event of husband's death.

It's a good job we took advice, because we'd completely overlooked that, and it would be bad enough for my husband to die, without having to deal with his ex wife wanting a chunk of the estate ......

ChocHobNob Wed 25-Aug-10 15:43:04

I've read repeatedly that in the case of a death of a father, the biological Mother of their non resident child can make a claim on a will to cover child support that would have been paid for the remaining years until the child was 16/18/19 ... what happens to the resident children of that father?

Say for example, there is £20,000 left over in a will. Bio mother makes a claim and child support for the rest of the child's life would have been £15,000. What happens to the 2 children who lived with the father and who would need supporting by the other bio Mother for the rest of their lives, but no child support was being paid at the time?

Basically, I'm wondering what would happen to me, if my H suddenly died and the Mother of his child made a claim on his will for her daughter ... what would happen to my 2 young children? Would be be considered or not?

ChocHobNob Wed 25-Aug-10 15:44:07

Great minds Petal ... wink

foolio Wed 25-Aug-10 15:48:33

DP and I are not married yet but I intend to take advice before we are married. At the moment my assets are greater than DPs and to be perfectly blunt, I don't want his DD to have anything of mine.

If I'm lucky enough to have my own family I'd like everything I have to go to them - and everything my dad leaves me, I want to go to them too.

BloomingDaisy Wed 25-Aug-10 15:57:07

Petal, I'm wondering the same thing....

LadySanders Wed 25-Aug-10 16:04:42

i have ds1 by 1st husband, and 2 more children with 2nd husband. we are in the process of doing wills, but ds1 will get 1/3 of 'my' 50%, and the rest split between the other 2 children, which seems the fairest way to do it given that ds1 will also inherit from his own (very wealthy) father

ChocHobNob Wed 25-Aug-10 16:05:23

I realise I was practically repeating your OP BD, sorry.

Hope someone has some advice. x

Jaquelinehyde Wed 25-Aug-10 19:43:15

Foolio I think your attitude is disgusting.

Good luck creating any kind of relationship with your step daughter, you will need it.

I would have thought if you were at the point where you were considering marrying the poor guy you would be willing to accept his daughter as if your own. I feel very, very sorry for your dsd.

From a step child's point of view;

My dad is 62 and in poor health, his partner is in her 40s with an 18 year old son (not my dad's son). My dad is likely to die first and leave (a considerable) sum to his partner. She in turn will leave it to her son.

Why should this boy, who refuses to be civil to my dad inherit a few hundred thousand pounds of his money while I get nothing?

Still I won't say anything, its his money, etc, etc.

Petal02 Thu 26-Aug-10 09:28:35

Stripey - we have a similar situation with my Dad. Mum passed away, and Dad has a new partner. However Dad's already signed everything over (house included) to my brother and I. As his estate was accrued with him and Mum over the years, he wants to ensure it all passes to his children, and not his new partner and her children, who've only been around a short time.

ladydeedy Thu 26-Aug-10 10:10:21

I dont have children but DH does from previous marriage. One of them lives with us. I own our property and have more assets than DH but it is all "joint" in theory. BTW, I also feel it odd that we feel we have to leave money to the next generation! smile. We have agreed that capital will be divided as follows - our "estate" will be split 50/50 - his half he will give 50/50 to the two children. Most of my half will go to charity and a small sum to each of my godchildren. You are right Petal02 that the mother can claim against the estate of the husband for mainenance for the child if DH dies before child leaves education. His life insurance would cover that.

foolio Thu 26-Aug-10 12:45:19

Jacquelinehyde, don't attack me, please.

See previous threads to see how other women feel about the "accepting your SD as your own". She isn't my daughter. She never will be.

Should I leave money to a step child thereby reducing what my own children will inherit?

Do you think my father wants to leave his money to someone else's child?

DP's DD will inherit from BOTH her parents, so why should she inherit from me as well?

You seem to be suggesting that attempting to create a relationship with a step child is dependant upon what they expect to inherit from their step parents.

I'd also suggest you change your attitude before posting to me again. Thanks!

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