Got Clients with Blended Families?

Make Sure You Know All of the Potential Planning Strategies to
Navigate Through the Complex Issues of the Modern Family

While the divorce rate in the United States has been declining, it does not necessarily mean that the planning needed for families with children from a prior marriage or relationship is also declining. The modern family today is typically made up of at least one child from a prior marriage or relationship.

As one can imagine, these blended family arrangements bring up a number of unique challenges and concerns when it comes to estate planning.  From ensuring proper planning following the disability and death of the first spouse to ensuring that the first spouse to die’s children are fairly and properly taken care of in the aftermath of the passing of their parent.

Whether you’re an attorney, CPA, financial advisor or insurance agent, you now have an opportunity to listen and learn from one of the nation’s renowned estate planning attorneys and experts on planning strategies for blended families, L. Paul Hood, Jr., JD, LL.M., as he shares some of his unique insights in this special 3-part presentation entitled, “Estate Planning for Blended Families”.

PART 1: Initial Interview and Key Considerations When Working with Blended Families

During this 93-minute presentation, Paul will cover:

  • Clarifying the blended family makeup, including statistics on how common blended families are to practitioners
  • Working effectively with blended families, including joint or separate representation
  • What might you include in your retainer agreement or a side agreement about representation?
  • What signs to look for to protect the client and yourself?
  • How to properly prepare for the initial meeting?
    • Are your Questionnaires and other forms updated to reflect blended family data?
    • How to engage and move forward
  • Understanding the blended client’s values and goals
  • Why blended family estate plans fail (from both a tax and non-tax perspective!)
  • Community property and separate property and the blended family, including issues around commingling
  • Analyzing marriage contracts, property agreements, as well as estate planning obligations to former partners/spouses
  • Issues around the family home and the couple’s living arrangements
  • Planning for children in blended families
    • Family business and income issues, including buy-sell agreements.
    • Addressing the frequently contentious issue of tangible personal property (keepsakes and heirlooms); suggestions for drafting and planning to reduce disputes.
    • Beneficiary designations for life insurance, IRAs, deferred compensation agreements and qualified retirement plans.
  • Considerations related to the various fiduciary and non-fiduciary roles in the estate plan:
    • Addressing role of trustees and beneficiaries in revocable and irrevocable trusts in blended families
    • Reviewing issues in financial powers of attorney and health proxies that are unique in blended family estate planning
    • Understanding living wills and their purpose and importance in blended families in particular

PART 2: Lifetime Estate Planning Options for Blended Families

During this 94-minute presentation, Paul will cover:

  • General considerations of planning and drafting for inter-vivos transfers for blended families
  • Irrevocable lifetime estate planning, particularly for blended family couples, as well as the new estate planning paradigm
  • The traps of joint tenancies in blended family couples; planning to address these issues including the severance of joint tenancies
  • Gift-splitting in the context of blended family couples
  • Estate equalization in blended families in the world of portability
  • Design parameters for the following inter-vivos estate planning techniques for blended families, including Lifetime QTIP trusts, QPRTs, CRTs, CLTs, GRATs, SLATs, life insurance and ILITs, and much, much more!

PART 3: Testamentary Estate Planning for Blended Family Clients

During this 85-minute presentation, Paul will cover:

  • General considerations for planning and drafting wills and testamentary trusts for blended families
  • Ways to ensure that no changes are made to an estate plan of a blended family spouse/partner, including:
    •    Mutual wills
    •    Contracts to make a will
    •    Marriage contracts
    •    In terrorem clauses<
  • QTIP trusts and other available planning options and issues
  • Common Trust and Will issues with blended families, including:
    • Interpreting the marriage contract or property agreement
    • Tax apportionment issues, including not waiving reimbursement of QTIP tax in the will
    • Conflict of interest issues
    • Choice of fiduciary issues, plus special considerations of using institutional trustees
    • Dispositive provisions, including the power to adjust, annuity trusts and unitrusts
    • Fiduciary discretion issues
    • Powers of appointment and the options and traps that are involved with them
    • Identities of the agents, personal representatives, and successor trustees, and how to plan around those matters
    • Dealing with the potential spousal election
    • Life estates and estate equalization
  • Issues pertaining to the administration of a blended family client’s estate or trust, including:
    • Identity of the client and the importance of disclosures
    • Allocations of assets within the client’s estate or trust
    • Apportionment of taxes and expenses at the second death
    • At the Intersection of Portability and Blended Families: No Man’s Land?

Your purchase includes an instantly downloadable Video & Audio Recordings, PDF Handouts & Modifiable Checklists and Charts. You get all of this and more for your office for just $399. A PDF transcript for this 3-part series is available as an add-on for an additional fee.

  • Program Title: Estate Planning for Blended Families – A 3-Part Series
  • Speaker:
  • Duration: 90 Minutes Each


Includes: Downloadable Video & Audio Recordings, PDF Handouts & Modifiable Checklists and Charts.

Duration: 90 minutes each.

NOTE: PDF Transcripts available as an add-on for an additional fee during checkout.



L. Paul Hood. Jr.

J.D., LL.M.
L. Paul Hood. Jr.

Paul is an author, speaker and consultant on tax, estate and charitable planning. A native of Louisiana (and a double LSU Tiger), Paul Hood obtained his undergraduate and law degrees from Louisiana State University and an LL.M. in taxation from Georgetown University Law Center before settling down to practice tax and estate planning law in the New Orleans area. Paul has taught at the University of New Orleans, Northeastern University, The University of Toledo College of Law and Ohio Northern University Pettit College of Law. Paul has authored or co-authored nine books and over 500 professional articles on estate, charitable…


The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc. and the presenter are not registered Continuing Education Sponsors and this program is not pre-approved for continuing education credit for any state or regulatory agency.

However, please note that each program includes a Certificate of Completion and, depending on the license and the regulatory agency for which governs a participant’s CE credit, some professionals may be able to self-report his or her participation and receive credit. It is the responsibility of the participant to complete any process necessary to seek self-reported CE credit for his or her participation. By registering for a teleconference (or purchasing on On-Demand program), you understand that CE credit is not guaranteed or warranted by the presenter or The Ultimate Estate Planner, Inc.