Divorce can be a difficult time for individuals and families. Often, we are busy juggling the responsibilities of life along with such a big change. As a result, you might be leaving out one of the most important legal steps in your divorce: changing your will.
Most married couples undertake their estate planning together, often leaving everything to their spouse. In the event of a finalized divorce there are laws that can assist other beneficiaries to invalidate that portion of the will. However, if you still desire to leave everything to your spouse this can pose a serious issue. A new will must be executed after the divorce indicating you still wish to leave everything to your ex-spouse. If you do not wish to leave everything to your soon-to-be-ex-spouse, a new will executed before your divorce is finalized is crucial. If you were to die before your divorce is finalized, your soon-to-be-ex-spouse would likely still get everything that was left to them in the will.
If you have children of your marriage, it is critical to re-evaluate your guardian elections and think about any money you may leave them. Assets left to minors must be done so carefully and with a person appointed to manage the money until they reach a designated age. If you fail to designate such a person your ex-spouse could be managing all of your assets after you pass away.
Finally, if you signed any additional documents with your estate planning, such as powers of attorney, it is also important to consider if you still want your spouse involved in making those decisions. Although you may be tired of visiting with your attorney during your divorce, it is critical that you take the step of updating your will to prevent unwanted outcomes should you pass away.
Do you need help updating your will during a divorce? Call the Toups Law Firm at (832) 761-5107.