After you get a divorce, one of the best things you can do for your future, your heirs and yourself is to update or completely redo your estate plan. Your estate plan likely took into account your spouse’s wishes as well as your own, so there may be many aspects that involve them. Since they’re now an ex-spouse, it’s a good idea to rework those legal documents and make sure they’re not going to be entitled to more than you want them to be.
There are a few documents that are the most important to update. These include updating your health care proxy, updating your will, reviewing your prenuptial agreement, and amending your trusts.
Changing health care proxies
After you get a divorce, you want to make sure the health care proxy you choose is the person who is going to have your best interests at heart. It might still be your ex-spouse, but the likelihood is that you’ll want someone else in charge of your medical care if you’re unable to make your own health care decisions.
Updating the will
The next step is to update your will. Make sure it is in line with your divorce orders and that you appoint someone you trust to take over the estate if you pass away.
Review your prenuptial agreement
While it might seem unusual, it’s a good idea to review your prenuptial agreement and to make sure that your estate plan is in line with it. You will need to make sure that it matches up with what your ex-spouse is entitled to if you pass away.
Amend any trusts you have
Finally, you need to look into any trusts you have, so that you can amend them appropriately. The main thing you want to do is to make sure you’re leaving only what you intend to leave to your ex-spouse, not more or less. If you have gifts for heirs or children, you also want to make sure someone you trust is in charge of guarding those assets and distributing them, especially if you don’t trust your ex-spouse to do so in the way you’d like.
These are four things to do if you get a divorce. Your estate plan has to reflect this major life change. If you don’t update it, you could be caught off-guard if you’re injured or sick, or your family could be surprised with complications with your estate if you suddenly pass away.