Many people only want to complete estate planning once, but if you divorce your spouse, you might need to update your wills and trusts. Updating your estate planning ensures that your hard-earned assets go where you want them to after your death.
Make sure your estate planner knows your financial obligations
One of the most important factors to keep in mind when updating your wills and trusts after a divorce is your financial obligation to your former partner. Your divorce agreement should dictate what type of assets they’re entitled to in the event of your death, and these must be considered during estate planning.
Update your will to reflect changes in your personal life
Your former spouse may be prominent in your will, but it’s unlikely that you’ll want them to receive assets from you after a divorce and upon your death. It’s best to change your will to reflect the new life change.
Important factors to update in your will after a divorce include:
- Executors of your estate
- Guardian of minor children
- Beneficiaries of assets and property
Living trusts can be changed, but irrevocable trusts cannot
If you and your spouse created an irrevocable trust while you were married, you can’t change it; however, you can change a living trust. Should you have a separate property that’s not considered marital property, you may wish to put it into a trust after your divorce to ensure the right person inherits it.
Changing your estate plans during a divorce is a necessity. However, this is a process you should also do during any major life event, including new marriages and births. It’s best to consult with a professional about any questions and to find out more about the process.