Can estate planning include a non-married partner?

On Behalf of | Feb 12, 2020 | Family Law |

There are two goals to estate planning; determining what happens to your property after you die and knowing who will take care of you once you become incapacitated. When you have a partner but are unmarried, it is imperative to have an estate plan. The plan will provide for them in the event of your death or incapacity. 

Without an estate plan, your partner cannot make any end-of-life medical decisions for you or receive anything from your estate. According to the intestate succession rules, your parents and close relatives will receive all your property if you do not leave a will behind. 

By creating a will, you can assign your assets to whoever you want. It can be your partner, family, friends or charity organizations. You can also choose a legal guardian to raise your children on your behalf. Unless there is a problem with the person you want, the court has to appoint them. 

Another way you can secure the future of your partner even after you die is by owning items together in a joint tenancy with the right to survivorship. According to Justia, you only need to submit both your names as the owners of an asset. When you die, the asset will automatically transfer to your partner. 

You may want your partner to be in charge of your healthcare matters when you become incapacitated. You may choose to give them a healthcare power of attorney and living will. Moreover, if you wish them to have control over your finances, you can provide them with a financial power of attorney. A power of attorney gives them the authority over your assets or health, allowing them to make decisions according to your wishes.