Estate planning for a married couple can be complicated under the easiest of circumstances. When the couple has a significant age gap between them, estate planning can get even more complicated. With an age gap of ten years, for example, it is more than likely that the two will not be retiring at the same time, may not need long-term care at the same time, and may not have similar financial portfolios.
When a married couple who are roughly the same age sit down to create an estate plan, both incomes and financial portfolios can typically be combined, working under the assumption that the pair will face about the same issues at about the same time. When one spouse is going to retire at a time when the other spouse is at the height of his or her career, both financial and estate planning become more complicated.
Without careful estate planning, all of one spouse’s income could be spent paying for long-term care for the other, for example. Retirement planning may also be skewed because the couple will have an artificially high retirement income for a number of years before the younger spouse retires.
If you are part of an age gap marriage, make sure you sit down with your financial advisor as well as your estate planning attorney to make sure that the age difference is taken into consideration when looking at both your financial future and your estate plan.