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3 areas of your estate plan to revisit amid divorce

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2024 | Estate Planning |

Amid the emotional and practical challenges of divorce, it is helpful to revisit your estate plan to ensure it aligns with your current circumstances and wishes. Divorce can have major implications for your estate plan, impacting many different aspects of it.

Updating your estate plan amid divorce helps reflect your new marital status and the impending changes that lay ahead in your life.

1. Beneficiary designations

A key area to revisit in your estate plan during divorce is beneficiary designations. Review any you made for your financial accounts, retirement plans and life insurance policies. Many people designate a spouse as the primary beneficiary in these documents, which may no longer be appropriate post-divorce. Failing to update beneficiary designations could result in unintended consequences, such as assets passing to your ex-spouse instead of intended beneficiaries.

2. Asset distribution

Divorce often involves the division of marital assets. This can impact your estate plan’s asset distribution provisions. It is important to review your will or trust to ensure that it reflects your revised asset ownership and distribution preferences post-divorce. This may involve updating provisions related to property ownership, bequest, and inheritance rights.

3. Health care directives

Another key aspect of your estate plan to revisit during divorce is your health care directives. These documents empower trusted people to make medical decisions on your behalf if you suffer incapacitation. During divorce, you may want to reconsider who you appoint as your health care agent and update your preferences regarding end-of-life care and medical treatment.

Taking proactive steps to update your estate plan during divorce can provide peace of mind. It also helps ensure that your wishes come to fruition in the event of incapacity or death.