Ending your marriage can result in a ripple effect of change and, in the aftermath, there is much you will have to adjust, including your estate plan. Most people tend to leave a large portion of their estate to their spouse and, if you forget to update it, your former spouse may inherit your assets if you pass away. Therefore, it is crucial to revise your estate plan to reflect the changes in your life.
Updating Your Estate Plan
The best way to approach this matter is to revoke your old will and execute a new one. To revoke an old will, you can state in your new will that you wish to revoke all previous wills. If your former spouse was the executor of your estate in your previous will, you will need to designate a new person in this role. If you have minor children, you can also designate a guardian for them as well. If both you and your former spouse die, the guardian named in your will can care for them.
Similarly, if you have a living trust, you should create a new one after your divorce. Creating a new trust will give you the ability to prevent your former spouse from controlling any assets you leave to your minor children. Moreover, you should also name a new beneficiary on various accounts, policies, and assets. Since retirement accounts are usually considered marital assets, these will be divided during the divorce process and the judgment you receive will determine if any additional changes are necessary.
If you have a financial power of attorney or advance directive, the person you appointed to these roles was likely your spouse, so you will have to revoke the existing document and execute a new one. You can take care of this task even while your divorce is still pending.
Speak to an Experienced Estate Planning Attorney About Your Case Today!
Divorce is a major life-altering decision that can impact many areas of your life. At the Law Office of Nancy Perry Eaton, PLLC, our knowledgeable attorney is experienced in assisting clients with their divorce and estate planning needs. We will provide you with the advice you need to update your estate plan in the aftermath of your divorce, so it accurately reflects your current needs and goals.
Reach out to our law office today at (254) 221-8588 to request a consultation and get started on revising your estate plan.