Estate Planning And Divorce

In divorce, you will go through a number of steps to separate your life from the life of your spouse. One of those steps is to talk to a lawyer about updating your estate plan.

At Hendrickson Cooper Hughes, based in Huntington Beach, California, our lawyers are here to guide you through the steps of the divorce. Call 714-362-2413 for a free initial consultation.

Estate Planning And Divorce

It is unfortunately common for an ex spouse to be named the beneficiary of a will or the agent under a power of attorney. Even if the estate planning document does not reflect your current wishes, it would be enforceable if you should die or become disabled.

Here are just some examples of estate planning and other legal documents that should be updated after your divorce:

  • Wills and trusts: Unless you want your ex to be the beneficiary of your will or trust, or to be the administrator of your trust, you should promptly update those designations after your divorce.
  • Powers of attorney: Married couples typically name each other as their agents under a power of attorney. Your agent would have the legal right to make financial decisions for you if you are incapacitated.
  • Advance directive: More than likely, your spouse is the person you named to medical decisions for you if were in a situation where you couldn't make those decisions for yourself. He or she would also be the one to advise medical professionals whether you want artificial life support if you are in a terminal condition with no hope of recovery.
  • Life insurance, retirement and stock accounts: Life insurance policies, retirement and stock accounts are typically distributed by beneficiary designation. If you named your spouse as your beneficiary (which you probably did) you may want to update those designations.

Our attorneys can refer you to a qualified estate planning attorney who can help you update your legal documents to reflect your current wishes.

For More Information About Estate Planning And Divorce

For more information about the legal documents you need to update after your divorce, call 714-362-2413 or complete our simple contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.