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What Factors Should I Consider When Naming My Spouse as My Beneficiary?

Here are some factors to consider when naming my spouse as my beneficiary:

  • The possibility that your spouse’s needs will increase in the future

  • The manner of living to which your spouse has become accustomed

  • The ability of your spouse to provide for his or her needs from his or her assets and earning ability

  • The needs of children, elderly parents, or other persons that you may feel an obligation to support

  • whether your spouse should receive your assets outright, or with some limitations (If your spouse’s share should be limited, you may wish to consider the use of trusts for the benefit of your spouse.)

  • The likelihood that your spouse would remarry after your death, and the possible effect on your children and/or other beneficiaries.

  • Your spouse’s ability or inclination to manage the assets that he or she would receive from your estate

  • The extent you wish to control the disposition of the assets that remain after your spouse’s death

  • The needs of children, elderly parents, or other persons that you may feel an obligation to support