The process of a divorce can be long and complicated, with multiple important decisions pushed to the wayside for the sake of timesaving and emotional relief. Many fail to follow through with updating their estate plan soon after they get divorced. This is a task that should be completed as close to the divorce as possible, if not before the actual divorce itself.
There are some simple steps that you must take, in terms of estate planning, after a divorce. Taking care of these few simple and easy tasks will help to keep your estate safe and secure. If you are going through a divorce, be sure to look into the following estate planning decisions.
Make a List of Heirs
It is important for you to make an updated list of heirs, as you want to make sure that your belongings are will be going to the people that you would like them to go to. This is important for those who had an estate plan before their divorce, as there are some individuals who may not be heirs after said divorce.
Many fail to realize that they need to rearrange the inheritances of their heirs after going through a divorce. Part of estate planning is moving the money around to your different heirs. If you remove heirs from your estate plan but fail to redistribute that money to others, the money will not be designated to anyone or anything.
Name a Power of Attorney
Couples will generally designate their significant other as their power of attorney during their relationship. An important part of after-divorce estate planning is moving that power of attorney to a new individual. The power of attorney will handle any decisions regarding you and your estate if you are not in the capacity to do so yourself.
Name a Successor
It is important for you to name a head-of-estate after a divorce, as many also name this specific individual as their spouse. The successor will be the individual left with the affairs of your estate after your passing.
Update Your Life Insurance
Life insurance is often ignored after a divorce, as many simply fail to think about their insurance during the process of the divorce. Most couples will file jointly for life insurance, or will name their significant other as the benefactor of their insurance plan. This is an important aspect of after-divorce estate planning, as the plan must be redirected to an individual that you will still be connected to. Many will name their power of attorney as the benefactor of their life insurance, as this person is generally the main benefactor of the entire estate plan.
Update your Will
Estate planning covers more than the actual monetary holdings of your estate. Estate planning covers all of your assets, including physical property and belongings. Those who created a will before their divorce will want to update it to reflect the relationships that they currently have. Those who did not have a will prior to the divorce will want to create one for their current assets.