FAQ: Estate Planning and Divorce

Sometimes life throws us unexpected events that change the course of our lives. We may become divorced, suffer the loss of relatives, have new births in the family or acquire a significant amount of money. It is recommended that people review their estate plan every three to five years, or so. But, when unexpected events transpire before that, we may need to revisit our estate plan sooner. It is crucial to edit any changes as soon as possible, to confirm that your wishes reflect what life is like right now.

Here in the article to follow, we have provided details regarding estate planning, and how to remove your ex spouse’s name if you no longer want him or her to have a share of your assets down the line.

Removing Your Former Spouses Name

Those who divorced from their spouse, may have already had to pay a substantial amount in the settlement. Your former spouse may then get even more down the line, if you keep their name listed in your estate plan. At best, those recently divorced may have an amicable dynamic with their former spouse. But, this does not mean you still want him or her to have your vehicle, home, bank accounts or other assets in the event of your passing. Remove your former spouse if you have no desire to share any more of your assets with this person in the future.

Family of Your Former Spouse

There are plenty of roles that may be included in an estate plan. There are such roles such as the will executor, power of attorney, beneficiaries, guardians, and more. If you wrote your estate plan while still with your ex spouse, you may have listed names of his or her family members as well. If you want to cut ties with all of your ex spouse’s family, then these names may have to be changed too.

Taking Time to Do a Full Review

If someone has to revisit their estate plan to remove a former spouse’s name, they may want to just do an entire review altogether. It is also possible that your former spouse’s name was not just listed under one component of your estate plan. You may want to reach out to the organizations in charge of your 401k, retirement, bank accounts, and life insurance policy. The paperwork you filled out for these accounts or policies may have your former spouse listed.

Make a To-Do List Before Finalization

While editing your estate plan, you may want to create a to-do list so you feel more confident that all bases have been covered. Those who need some extra guidance while updating their estate plan, may turn to a probate lawyer Memphis, Tennessee trusts for insight. Making changes to an estate plan can be more complicated than simply crossing off names and putting a new date on the document. You may have to establish an entire new document, have it signed and witnessed just as you did the first time.

Thank you to our friends and contributors at Patterson Bray, for their knowledge about estate planning and divorce.