Immediately after getting a divorce, most people are sick of dealing with attorneys. The last thing most of them want to do is to voluntarily have more meetings with attorneys to make changes to their estate plans.
However, it may be vital that they do so.
Getting a divorce is a significant event that should cause everyone to revisit their estate plans to make sure their ex-spouse does not gain control of any of their property.
For some people, the law will automatically modify their plans should they pass away without eliminating an ex-spouse.
For people who have minor children with their ex-spouse, things may not be that simple, as the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog discusses in “Planning Ahead After Divorce.”
The big issue?
What if you pass away while your children with your ex-spouse are still minors? In that case, your ex-spouse will most likely have custody over the children.
Any property left for your children either in a will or by operation of the laws of intestate succession will then be under the substantial control of your ex-spouse.
Your ex-spouse will get to manage the property and be able to decide what to do with it on behalf of your children. This can be avoided by going to an elder law attorney and getting a trust.
Reference: Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog (Jan. 8, 2018) “Planning Ahead After Divorce.”