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How does a divorce impact existing estate plans?

On Behalf of | Jan 26, 2021 | Family Law |

When a Tennessee couple decides to end their marriage, they will face various financial changes and adjustments in virtually every aspect of their lives. With all of the changes they could experience, it is easy to see how some may overlook how their divorce could impact their estate plans. After major life events, it is important to carefully review all documents and update them as needed.

One of the most important steps that should be taken when updating an estate plan after a divorce is removing the former spouse as the primary beneficiary in the will and certain types of accounts. They should also be removed from financial and health care powers of attorney. Failure to do this could lead to complications in case of incapacitation or death, regardless of whether the decedent remarried or verbalized different wishes.

Divorce may also affect guardianship designations for minor children. Parents should consider whether they need to adjust their wills to account for a divorce or remarriage. This also includes giving thought to who they want to care for their kids in case one or both parents pass away.

The terms of an estate plan may not seem important until these plans are needed. There are many things that divorce will affect, but in the midst of these changes, it is important not to overlook estate planning impacts as well. After a divorce, it may be helpful to speak with a Tennessee attorney who understands estate and family law and is able to provide qualified guidance on these matters.