Creighton McLean & Shea PLC
734.245.9289

Just exactly who is your "child" or "grandchild"?

These are words we use every day, and of course we know what they mean, Or do we? Suppose your son's wife has a daughter ("Allison") from her prior marriage, but your son has raised Allison since she was a... 

toddler, and treats her as his own. Is Allison your granddaughter? Under the law, no. So if your Will or Trust says you are leaving a gift to "your grandchildren", Allison will not be included. (But if your son adopts Alice, she willbe included as your grandchild under the law.)Or suppose your son has been living with his girlfriend for ten years in a committed relationship, and has raised her 12-year old son, "Brent," as his own. Is Brent your grandson? No. In fact, Brent is not even a step-grandchild, and does not stand to inherit anything from you or your son, regardless of how close your son (or you) are to him.Now suppose your daughter is in a life-time partnership with another woman, and the partner has a baby ("Chelsea"), which the two of them raise together. Is Chelsea your granddaughter? Under current law, no. Even if your daughter and her partner were married at the time of conception, it is not settled that Chelsea would be considered your daughter's child.These situations illustrate why, in this age of blended families and non-traditional relationships, it is important to identify in your estate plan who is included and who is not. You can make those decisions, and your estate plan documents should make your decisions clear. If you download a stock form from RocketLawyer or LegalZoom, these issues will not be addressed. You need to see an experienced estate planning attorney who can assess your situation and your wishes, and draft documents that clearly identify the persons who are to benefit from your estate.At Creighton McLean & Shea PLC, we stand ready to help you sort through the unique issues in your family, and give you the peace of mind that your legacy will match your wishes. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Rating

Get Started By Contacting Our Firm

How We Are Different

  1. Excellence

    We strive to become one of the most sought-after providers of legal services in the Metropolitan Detroit area.

  2. Service

    We endeavor to meet or exceed the expectations of our clients in all aspects of their legal representation.

  3. Encouragement

    We promote a collegial atmosphere in which all individuals are encouraged to learn, improve and excel and to become leaders in the legal, business and civic communities.

  4. Community

    We will pursue our belief that individuals with a sense of family and community and with interests outside the practice of law are better for it.

Creighton McLean & Shea PLC
14881 Farmington Road
Livonia, MI 48154

Phone: 734-245-9289
Fax: 734-422-0461
Livonia Law Office Map

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy