While the Divorce if Pending
In the stress and turmoil of a divorce proceeding, many
forget about revisiting their estate plan.
If you died today, would you be happy with the distribution of your
property based on your current Last Will and Testament or Trust? Or if you have
no Trust or Last Will and Testament, would you want your spouse inheriting your
probate estate? Would you want your spouse making your health care decisions for
you were you to become incapacitated? If you have a financial power of attorney
that gives your spouse authority to make financial transactions on your behalf,
are you comfortable with him or her retaining that authority? If you answered ‘no’
to any of these questions, then you should seek out the guidance of an estate
planning attorney to ensure that your estate plan is in line with your
wishes. In addition, you should look at
the beneficiary designations on your life insurance policies and retirement
accounts and consider modifying them.
After the Divorce is Final
Many of the same concerns one should have regarding estate
planning during a divorce are present when it is concluded. Are your planning documents up to date? Do
they reflect your wishes? Are the beneficiary designations on your life
insurance policies and retirement accounts up to date? After a divorce is a key
time to sit down with an estate planner and make sure you have the requisite
documents in place and that they represent your wishes.