Call an Attorney in Milwaukee WI for Post-Divorce Estate Planning Help

by | May 30, 2017 | Lawyers

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When a couple becomes divorced, they sever all legal ties with one another, including the assets, privileges, and rights assigned in an estate planning document. In many cases, a state’s divorce laws will automatically invalidate a will or power of attorney when a marriage dissolves, it is still in a spouse’s interest to ensure their estate plan reflects these changes. Below are three estate planning steps to take after a divorce.

Write Another Will From Scratch

While the state’s laws will typically prevent an ex-spouse from inheriting the other person’s assets, other will provisions may endure through a divorce. For example, if the children were named as beneficiaries of an estate, they will still have an inheritance unless the current will is invalidated and a new one is created. In some areas, a divorce decree invalidates the entire will, which means the state will treat the person as intestate if they die before they write a new will. It’s a good idea to consult a family attorney  for an explanation of how a divorce can affect one’s will.

Divorce Invalidates a Power of Attorney

In most states, initiating a divorce automatically invalidates a durable power of attorney, which allows one spouse to act on the other’s behalf. However, if a document names the person as a guardian who will step forward if the other spouse can’t take care of his or her own affairs, such a provision may remain in force until the divorce becomes final. Consult a family or estate planning lawyer for advice before creating a power of attorney.

Assign a New Life Insurance Beneficiary

While most jurisdictions’ divorce laws treat the choosing of an ex-spouse as non-effective unless it is outlined in a divorce settlement, a person will have to name a new beneficiary to ensure that their wishes are followed after death.

Divorce is a complex, far-reaching process, and a family Attorney in Milwaukee WI can help clients navigate the complexities of the state’s legal system. Call us to schedule an appointment or visit their website to learn more about their services.

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