My husband wrote a secret will when our marriage was on the rocks, but we’re in a better place. Should I quietly write one too?

Dear Moneyist,

My husband wrote a new will when our relationship was in bad shape. I do not know what is in this will, but it’s still current and in his brother’s possession.

The good news: We are in a happier place now! However, I would like to write my own will. Before I do that, I have a few questions:

Also see: ‘My husband’s kids hate me and refused to come to our wedding, yet he is leaving them all his property.’ How can I negotiate to secure my future?

1. My husband is the beneficiary on my life-insurance policy. I would now like to split this 50/50 between him and my daughter. Would I have to change the policy?

2. I do not want him to sell any of the assets in my name so he can benefit from them, as I want to make sure they are secure for my daughter’s future. Can I specify this in my will?

3. I would like to leave my 401(k) and IRA accounts to my daughter and husband, splitting them 50/50. Can I state this in my will too?

Curious

Dear Curious,

My answers to your questions:

1. Yes.

2. Talk to your estate lawyer about a trust for your daughter, should she still be a minor at the time of your death. Make separate wills and keep them with your attorney; it’s not a job for relatives.

3. You need to change the beneficiary on the actual policies. Under federal law, your husband will need to sign a waiver to relinquish his claim to your 401(k).

Also see: As a baby boomer, I didn’t grow up with this culture of entitlement — do I have to leave my estate to my children or spouse?

Let me channel my inner

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