How is Your Will Affected by Divorce?

When you are married and implementing your estate plan, it’s a given that your spouse is included in your Will. But what happens to your estate plans if your marriage suffers a divorce?  

It’s easy to neglect changing your estate planning documents in the midst of court filings, deadlines, and attorney meetings—but VERY important that you remember to do so!

Failing to make changes to your Will after a divorce could result in your former spouse receiving all of the assets you willed to them when you were still married.

Here are a few things you can do post-divorce to make sure that your Will reflects your most current wishes:

  • Name an Executor – If you previously named your former spouse as the executor of your estate, it’s time to name a new one to prevent your ex from being in charge of your assets.
  • Update Beneficiaries – Many of the assets included in your Will will be distributed directly to the named beneficiaries. Make sure to update beneficiaries on documents such as life insurance policies, IRA’s, 401k’s, and bank accounts.
  • Revoke Your Will – The very best way to ensure that your current wishes are honored is to revoke the old Will, and prepare a new one. A properly executed, new Will will supersede older versions, and allow you to literally “wipe the slate clean” on your old Will.

In many states, divorce automatically revokes parts, or all, of your Will—but it is not recommended to rely on state law alone. Having up-to-date estate planning documents is an airtight way to ensure that your wishes are made clear, and avoid any potential confusion after your passing.

If you are divorced, or are beginning the divorce process, and need to update any parts of your estate plan documents, give the attorney team at Estate & Long Term Care law a call. We can help you make changes to your documents, or prepare new documents that reflect your current situation and wishes. Give us a call today at (509) 447-3242 to begin your estate plan preparation.

Written by ELTC Law Group

ELTC Law Group

We have been in business since 2007, helping the elderly and their families with a wide range of different issues including estate planning, asset preservation, long-term care, and post-death issues.