Planning for the future is important, especially when it comes to ensuring that your final wishes are outlined in the event of the unexpected. While most people understand the importance of having a will or an estate plan in place, a shocking 60% of all Americans do not have one. For those who have taken the time to create a will, it’s essential to remember that wills aren’t a one and done type of situation. In fact, it’s important that you take the time to update your will on a regular basis to ensure that it is as up to date and accurate as possible. One such situation that should trigger you to update your will is in the event that you and your partner divorce. Working with a will planning lawyer is essential when it comes to updating your will at just the right time.
The Unexpected Can Happen at Any Moment
One of the main reasons people do not have a will or fail to regularly update their will is because they believe that they have ample time to do so. However, it’s important to be aware that the unexpected can occur at any moment. In the blink of an eye, your entire life can change. Because of this, it’s important to update your will as soon as possible, especially if you have recently undergone a divorce.
You May Not Want Your Ex to Inherit Everything
If you do not update your will following a divorce, and something happens to you, your ex may stand to benefit from your passing. For example, if you failed to update your beneficiaries on pension plans or life insurance policies, your ex may inherit some, or even all of your assets. Chances are this is the last thing you would like to occur, making it key that you update your will in the wake of a divorce.
You Likely Do Not Want Your Ex to Make Key Decisions for You
Another component to your estate plan are medical directives and power of attorney. This appoints someone in the event that you become incapacitated or are no longer able to make decisions for yourself. In some cases, married couples may appoint their partner to take on this role. If you and your spouse have recently divorced, an outdated will could leave an ex with the power to make these types of decisions for you. Contacting a will planning lawyer can help to ensure that all estate planning documents are updated, and old copies of wills are shredded to avoid any confusion down the road.
Although no person wants to consider a time when they are no longer living, planning for when the time comes is important. Not only do you want to ensure that your wishes are carried out in the way you would like, but also that your loved ones have a clear roadmap of how you would like your assets distributed. Contact an estate lawyer in Phoenix, AZ today for the legal guidance you deserve when developing or updating your will.
Thanks to Kamper Estrada, LLP for their insight into estate planning and updating your will after a divorce.