A divorce can be legally and emotionally confusing even under the best circumstances. While concerns over asset division, child support, and spousal support are urgent, it is equally important for newly divorced people to re-evaluate their estate plans. By consulting a law firm that focuses on estate and probate in Mesa, AZ, a client can create a plan that’s in line with their new situation.
Write a New Will
In most instances, divorce causes people to rethink their wishes on asset division after death. In others, assets may have been forfeited in a divorce. While divorce invalidates inheritances left to a former spouse, confusion can be avoided when a client takes the time to write a new will and make their current wishes enforceable.
Change Beneficiary Designations
Retirement savings, bank accounts, and life insurance policies with the former spouse’s name can be simple to overlook. Unlike a will, these assets are typically given to the named beneficiary even though this shouldn’t happen. After the divorce, the client should examine his or her accounts and change designations to keep the ex-spouse from inheriting them upon death.
Establish a New Power of Attorney
A durable power of attorney gives someone the legal authority to act on another person’s behalf if they are incapable of making their own decisions. Attorneys who handle estate and probate in Mesa, AZ recommend revoking these powers given to former spouses to avoid allowing them to make financial or medical decisions in the event of a client’s incapacity.
Form a Trust for Disabled or Minor Children
If the marriage involves minors or disabled children, the ex-spouse is typically the one who will manage the children’s assets. However, a client can change this by making gifts to the children in a trust and by choosing a trustee.
Follow the Requirements Set Forth in the Divorce Decree
If there are orders requiring a client to maintain specific probate and estate planning provisions, they must be followed. Clients should discuss these rules with their estate planning lawyer.
At the law firm of Janet R. Feeley L.L.C., the team takes pride in the high quality of the legal services provided. If a person is going through a divorce, they can count on the firm’s lawyers to review their estate documents and recommend important changes that ensure one’s wishes are upheld. Browse the website or call today to set up a consultation.