Going through a divorce leaves little mental space or energy for dealing with other matters. However, this does not mean that individuals in Florida can simply ignore everything else. While it can be frustrating to realize that there is even more to deal with, updating an estate plan during or soon after a divorce is essential.
Wills are often seen as an extension of their makers, but this cannot be the case when the documents list assets that are no longer in their possession. Divorce involves the dividing of marital property, so failing to update a will might ultimately paint an inaccurate picture of a person’s post-divorce assets. Heirs would probably not be pleased to learn that they will not receive an inheritance because their parent or grandparent left them something that they do not even own anymore. Adjusting how much an heir receives to better reflect divided financial accounts is also important.
Custodial parents should also review and update their guardian designation as needed. A guardian is supposed to be the person who takes over caring for a minor child in the event of a parent’s death, so it is not a decision to be made lightly. In many cases this choice will not change, but it is still a good idea to re-evaluate the designated individual in light of new circumstances.
While updating a plan is important, those in Florida who have never created an estate plan to begin with might find the time following a divorce as an opportune moment to do so. Fresh out of a divorce, individuals might be hyperaware of their wishes for the future as well as what assets they have to their name. Even a simple will is a great first step to creating what can turn out to be a lasting legacy.