Estate planning in divorce
Estate planning in divorce? A divorce is a very stressful time. People are always told to be sure to ask your attorney about this, and also about that. It can all be very confusing and overwhelming. You might not even consider that you may need to update your estate planning documents as you are headed toward or in the midst of a divorce. Yes, your documents and beneficiary designations will need updated at the appropriate point in time. But proceed with caution and don’t make any changes until you have consulted an attorney.
Before you change any beneficiary designation or try to re-title the ownership of any asset, check with your divorce attorney. Before a divorce is final, there are certain assets that may need to stay titled as they are until the domestic relations court signs the final version of the divorce decree. As much as you may want to ensure that your soon to be ex-spouse doesn’t get an inheritance that they are not entitled to, you don’t want to put yourself at a disadvantage in the divorce matter either.
After a divorce, many people buy a new home. Home buying is one of the places that people inadvertently change their estate plan. The way that your home is titled when you purchase it will determine who gets it after your death. This is something that an estate planning attorney reviews when they meet with you. Remember, in Ohio, most new homeowner’s are not represented by an attorney. Realtors represent the parties in a residential real estate transaction. Realtors are not lawyers. The realtor’s job is to close the transaction-not to think about the legal rights and obligations of home ownership. That is an attorney’s job. An estate planning attorney’s job.
After your divorce is finalized, you definitely want to go back and meet with your estate planning attorney. It is time to make sure that you are on the path to solid financial footing with a budget, life insurance, retirement savings, etc. Your estate planning attorney can connect you with other trusted advisors to keep your financial and legal future on the right track.
Estate planning in divorce doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Contact me to help you work through this process.