One day you are at the beach in Fort Lauderdale when you get a call from your mother saying that your father passed away. Most people would break down in tears and cry. However, you had a horrible relationship with your father your whole life. Instead, you get a big grin on your face. Your dad had a lot of money and now you are ready to collect. After all, you were his son, even with the bad relationship there is no way your father would have disinherited you.
It hurts to say this, but you will receive nothing while your mother is still alive. If one parent has passed away while the other is still alive, the answer is simple: the money is first inherited by the spouse.
In Florida when married people create estate plans, they typically ask for the money to go to their surviving spouse. The purpose behind this is to make sure their spouse is taken care of. If there are children under the age of 18, this allows the spouse to comfortably provide for the children. There are some circumstances that a child under 18 might receive money in the form of a trust. With that said, the spouse is often put in charge of the trust until the child reaches 18.
It is extremely rare for adult children to receive any kind of inheritance until both parents have passed away. The reason for this is not to make the children feel cheated, but it is to help ensure that the needs of the living parent are not a burden or concern for the adult children.
If you live in Miami-Dade, Broward, or Palm Beach counties it is time to start preparing your estate-planning portfolio. Make sure your spouse and children are taken care of when you are gone. You can’t predict the future, but you can plan for it.
Contact an experienced estate-planning attorney at The Hershey Law Firm, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at (954) 303-9468 to discuss your estate planning needs.