Anytime someone loses a spouse, it is important that the surviving spouse's estate plan be revisited. As it turns out, widows often need something different than widowers.
Studies suggest that single women are more likely to have financial difficulties than single men. This means that a widow's estate plan generally needs to be more flexible than a man's just in case the widow does experience financial issues in the future.
While estate planning for widows is often difficult, it is not impossible.
Recently, the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog published a list of planning tips for widows in an article titled "Planning Tips For Widows."
The list includes:
- Wait at least six months after a widow's spouse passes away to allow proper time for mourning.
- Financial accounts should be easy to access and flexible.
- Immediate needs should be addressed before any financial or estate planning.
- Do not be afraid to seek professional services such as counseling if needed.
If any widows need help reevaluating their estate plans, they should seek the counsel of an experienced attorney.
Reference: Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog (February 10, 2015) "Planning Tips For Widows."