Individuals in Louisiana and across the nation who have recently parted ways with a former spouse may experience various changes in their preferences and wishes for the future. After finalizing a divorce, one might find it helpful to consider updating personal information and estate planning goals to reflect these new wishes. However, some might not know why it could be vital to update their estate plans after a divorce and what might happen should they fail to do so.
What might happen
While there are a variety of reasons for which one might benefit from updating estate planning goals after a divorce, one of the most pressing concerns could pertain to the process of property distribution. According to experts, updating estate planning documents and beneficiary information on retirement accounts could prove integral to ensuring that assets will be distributed to the proper parties when the time comes. As one’s ex-spouse might not fall under the list of preferred beneficiaries, taking steps to update information to reflect one’s new preferences could prove imperative.
Experts indicate that the process of removing one’s ex-spouse from beneficiary designations can be somewhat complex at times. Even if an ex-spouse loses rights to certain property after a divorce in accordance with state laws, some types of retirement accounts are governed by federal laws, which may supersede the former. As such, removing an ex-spouse’s name from beneficiary designations on such accounts and updating information to reflect new preferences could be vital to staving off undesirable results.
Going through a divorce can be a stressful process and knowing what types of changes to make to estate planning goals after a similar change in life can be an intimidating task. Individuals in Louisiana who face a similar circumstance in life could benefit from consulting with an attorney for advice on areas in which updates might be necessary and on how best to make modifications. An attorney can work with a client in taking every possible measure to bring the estate plan in line with his or her current preferences and wishes for the future.