When planning their estates, most parents want to ensure that their child’s inheritance is protected from claims by a divorcing spouse. The same is true for many individuals who have accumulated (or expect to accumulate) significant wealth through their own efforts or from family. With the divorce rate at approximately 50 percent, this is a wise concern. The New Jersey Supreme Court and Appellate Division decisions in Tannen v. Tannen serve as a strong reminder why individuals must keep asset protection in mind when doing their estate planning and not just focus on tax minimization. Without proper planning, a divorce can have devastating financial consequences. Premarital and postmarital estate planning, such as trusts, family limited partnerships and prenuptial agreements, can be essential to avoiding such consequences. This article addresses estate planning vehicles that can help protect assets in the event of a divorce.
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