Now that you have finalized your divorce, the hard part is over. But while you may feel a sense of relief, you must still take further steps to protect your assets and your family.
1. Change the beneficiary designation on any life insurance policies
A life insurance policy is a contract that designates who is to be paid upon the insured’s death. Upon your death, a check is going to be sent to whomever is listed as the beneficiary, even if it is your ex-spouse.
It is best to take a look at your life insurance policy to make sure any beneficiary designation is updated, so your family can be duly compensated by your policy if you pass away.
2. Update the beneficiary designation on any retirement accounts
Similar to your life insurance policy, your retirement accounts will pass who whomever is listed as your beneficiary. Although State law may automatically revoke the designation on your retirement account if an ex-spouse is listed, federal law states that the last named beneficiary is the one who receives the funds.
Depending on the type of retirement account you have, your ex-spouse may still be entitled to the funds if still listed as the beneficiary!
3. Create or revise estate planning documents
Is your former spouse named as a beneficiary of your trust or will? Be sure to choose a new Trustee for your trust, a new Agent for financial power of attorney, and a new Patient Advocate under your healthcare power of attorney. If you have minor children, name someone to manage any inheritance your child may receive once you pass away.