Estate planning documents to revisit after divorce

On Behalf of | Apr 25, 2024 | Estate Planning

Divorce brings profound changes to a person’s life that affect their personal relationships and long-term financial circumstances. These changes can quickly become overwhelming, leading many to forget their considerable impact on their estate plan.

Revisiting your estate plan after a divorce ensures that your legal documents reflect your current wishes under new circumstances. Failing to make these updates could result in unwanted consequences like your ex-spouse receiving your assets upon your death.

Will and trust

Spouses typically play a significant role when you design your will and trust during marriage. You have mostly likely appointed them as your executor, trustee or primary beneficiary. These positions grant them significant authority over the management of your estate and the distribution of your assets in the event of your passing. However, now that you are divorced, you might want to reconsider these designations to ensure that your assets go to people you now choose rather than your former spouse unless that is still your intention.

Power of attorney

This crucial legal document grants someone the authority to make financial decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated or unable to communicate your wishes. You will need to appoint a new person to this vital role. This can be a trusted family member, a close friend or a professional adviser.

Guardianship plans for children

Updating your guardianship nominations is among the critical revisions you should make after your divorce if you have minor children. Even if your spouse remains a primary guardian for your children, it is still vital to designate someone who can care for your children in the event of both your passing.

Revising your previous estate plan after a divorce is not just a clever idea; it is a necessary move that ensures your wealth reaches the people you care about, just as you intended. Taking the time to make these changes not only safeguards your assets but also gives you peace of mind and a bit of respite as you transition into your new life post-divorce.