Once you’ve filed for divorce in Colorado, it might seem safe to assume that your former spouse will be automatically disinherited from your will. However, if you don’t update your estate plans, your former spouse may still be eligible for a portion of your assets. They might even have control over major financial and legal decisions if you’re incapacitated.
Why should you review your estate plan after divorce?
During the estate planning process, you might have given your former spouse power of attorney or named them as your health care proxy. Even though you’ve gotten divorced, this decision still stands if you’re incapacitated or require end-of-life care. It’s important to take your former spouse’s name off these documents and choose another person to make decisions on your behalf.
You might have also named your former spouse as the executor of your will or the trustee of a trust fund. Make sure you take your former spouse’s name off your will and trusts and replace it with someone you can trust, like your estate planning attorney. You might also want to make a trust fund for your children if you haven’t already. Otherwise, your former spouse will control your children’s inheritance if you die before they turn 18.
You should review important assets like your savings account, retirement fund and life insurance policy to make sure that your former spouse isn’t still listed as the beneficiary. If they are, you should choose another friend or relative to inherit these assets after your death.
Do you need an attorney to help you revise your estate plan?
Once you’ve completed your estate plan, changing a few names might seem like a breeze. Unfortunately, revising your estate plan after your divorce can be much more complicated than that. An attorney may help you alter your plan to prevent litigation in the future.