Don’t forget to update your estate plan after a divorce

On Behalf of | Jan 19, 2023 | Estate Planning

After going through the divorce process in Texas, you are probably relieved and happy to get on with your life. Divorce can be complicated, and usually involves many different steps to complete.

One thing you should not overlook once your divorce is final is updating your will or other estate planning documents. A final divorce decree does not override terms in your will.

Your will

This means that your former spouse could still inherit any property granted to them under your will once you die, even if you are divorced.

Therefore, review your will and determine if any changes should be made. Remove your former spouse as the heir to any property or assets if you no longer want them to receive them after you die.

Additional estate planning documents

If you have a lot of assets, you might find it easier to revoke your will altogether and create an entirely new one. When you create a new will, it must explicitly state that this will revokes all prior wills.

In addition to your will, review any other estate planning documents you have, such as a power of attorney, health care directive or insurance policies.

People often designate their spouse to handle their financial or medical needs if they become incapacitated. Spouses are also usually beneficiaries of insurance policies, such as life insurance policies.

Help with reassessing your entire estate plan

As with a will, a divorce decree does not automatically change these designations. If you do not want your former spouse serving in these types of roles anymore, you should update these documents as well.

Moving on with life and making a fresh start is a positive change for many people. Meeting with an estate planning attorney to review and update your estate plan can prevent future complications with a former spouse.