Estate Planning After a “Friendly” Divorce and Why You Should Review

Have you and your spouse recently gone through a divorce but remained on good terms since? Perhaps you completed your estate planning documents together during your marriage. Would you still like them to serve as your administrator/health care agent or receive an inheritance if you were to pass away? If so, it is important for you to know that the wishes you have outlined in those documents may no longer be in effect! Reviewing your Estate Planning after divorce, even when it is a “friendly” divorce, is extremely important to ensure your desires remain up-to-date!

We always recommend updating your estate plan whenever a life-changing event occurs. But in the case of divorce, specifically, there is no question about it: you MUST sign your documents again. According to Fla. Stat. 736.1105, the dissolution of marriage, by judicial dissolution or declared invalid by court order, automatically bars or eliminates a preference for your ex-spouse to serve, stating “Upon dissolution of marriage, the revocable trust shall be construed as if the spouse had died at the time of the dissolution of marriage.

Believe it or not, this is more prevalent than it may seem.

The same would be true if you wanted your ex-in-laws to serve or receive an inheritance since the dissolution of the marriage voids the provisions of any revocable trust that “affects the settlor’s spouse”. Therefore, it is a best practice to update your documents, even if it takes time and an additional cost! Estate Planning after divorce is critical!

The experienced team of attorneys here at Hemness Faller Elder Law, The Law Office formerly known as Emma Hemness, P.A., are here for you and your family and we want to be YOUR estate planning and elder law attorneys. After all, we are ordinary people, providing extraordinary guidance backed by years of experience and advocacy for the vulnerable citizens in our community. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting.