Posted On: June 20th 2019
If you’re divorcing, it’s important to review your estate plan as early as possible, for two reasons:
First, you may wish to revise your plan immediately to prevent your spouse from inheriting or gaining control over your assets if you die or become incapacitated before the divorce is final. Second, although a divorce judgment or settlement automatically extinguishes certain of your former spouse’s rights, some documents must be modified to ensure that he or she doesn’t receive unintended benefits.
Consider revising your will and any revocable trusts to exclude your spouse. Note that, in many states, your spouse will retain elective share or community property rights to a portion of your estate until the marriage ends.
But revising your will or trust will limit your spouse to the legal minimum if you die before the divorce is final. If you have irrevocable trusts, determine whether they provide for your spouse’s interest to terminate automatically upon divorce.
Finally, bear in mind that, under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, any alimony paid is no longer deductible by the payer or taxable to the payee.
In light of this major life event, don’t hesitate to turn to us. We can review your estate plan and recommend any revisions necessary because of the divorce.