Divorce is a complicated and emotional process. With your mind focused on issues like separating assets, child custody, and financial obligations, estate planning may seem irrelevant. But estate planning and divorce are two important considerations.
Divorce is one life event that requires a review and revision of your estate plan. This is important in order to ensure that your wishes are intact. As your divorce progresses and you begin to look toward the future, it is important that you consider how your divorce will affect your estate plan.
Things to Know about Estate Planning and Divorce
Here are 3 things you need to know about estate planning and divorce:
1. You Need to Revoke or Revise Your Will
After a divorce, you need to revoke your will and create a new one, or revise your current will with the help of an attorney. Your will is one of the most important documents in your estate plan, and includes your wishes and designations for property and assets, who you want to be executor of your estate, and any guardianship designations you may choose to make. These decisions often change after a divorce. Your wishes should also be updated to ensure that during the probate process, your assets and property are left in the hands of those you wish.
2. You Need to Update Beneficiaries
Your will is the primary document that lists your beneficiaries, but don’t forget to update your beneficiaries listed on life insurance policies, retirement accounts (IRAs and 401(k)s), bank accounts, and brokerage accounts. You will have to request documents from each company to change your beneficiaries directly. Your beneficiaries are not automatically updated during a divorce. It is important to update your beneficiaries as soon as possible to ensure that you have the correct individuals listed.
3. You Need to Update Power of Attorney Documents
Most people who have power of attorney document drawn up give authority for their spouse to act on their behalf. The most common power of attorney documents are related to medical decisions or financial management. After a divorce, you likely do not want your former spouse having control over your medical or financial decisions, so you will need to update your power or attorney documents to reflect your most current wishes.
Get Help with Your Estate Planning and Divorce Questions or Concerns
If you are going through a divorce, the last thing you need to worry about is your estate plan being mismanaged or outdated. To get the help you need with estate planning and divorce questions or concerns, contact Daic Law to speak with our estate planning attorney. At Daic Law, we can help you review and revise your estate plan to ensure a seamless transition during or after a divorce. Schedule a consultation by calling our office at (713) 808-5246, or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.