How will divorce impact my estate plan?

As you anticipate or go through the divorce, you realize how cumbersome it can be. In addition to the complexity of separating your life from your spouse’s, there is also a mountain of paperwork that comes with it.

In addition to the paperwork as you negotiate your divorce, you may realize that your divorce will impact your other critical long-term plans. A change in your marriage could require a significant impact on your estate plans.

Here’s what you should know about the critical changes you may need to make to your estate plans if you are getting a divorce.

What documents will need changes?

Your estate plan is not a set-it-and-forget-it set of documents. As your life changes, you will need to make changes to your estate plan.

While you may not need to update your estate plan frequently, divorce is an important time to assess what needs to change to fit your changing circumstances. You should consider revising any documents that include your spouse, such as:

  • Advanced directives
  • Living wills
  • Trusts
  • Wills

Depending on your current plans and the dynamic of your relationship with your spouse, you may not want to make changes, or you may need to change your estate plans completely.

Should I revise before, during or after my divorce?

One of the challenges with estate planning is that you can hope the documents do not go into effect for a long time. Still, the reality is that their necessity is unpredictable.

You do not need to wait until your divorce is in progress or finalized to make changes. You should start making changes to your estate plan as soon as you know you want to make them.

Your estate plan is an integral part of your legacy. As you go through significant changes in your life, it is essential to update your estate plan to reflect your current wishes.