Documents to Consider Post-Divorce
Once your divorce is final, you will be left with a lot of paperwork, including your divorce decree and other documents. While it may seem that this is a time when paperwork is piling up, there are some important documents you must still consider. The majority of these pertain to documents in your estate plan, which you must change after divorce. The divorce likely directly impacted your plan and if you do not make the necessary changes, it could impact you and your family in the coming years.
Durable Power of Attorney
It is not uncommon for people to name their spouse as their durable power of attorney and after a divorce, no longer want that person making decisions for them. Florida law automatically revokes the durable power of attorney if the named individual is the former spouse of the principal, or the person that created it. Still, it is always best to change this document to specifically state that your spouse is no longer the durable power of attorney and to name a new one.
It is not uncommon for people to name a healthcare surrogate even when there is a power of attorney that can make certain decisions on their behalf. Appointing a healthcare surrogate is usually separate from any power of attorney and gives a person the legal right to make healthcare decisions for you if you become incapacitated.
Like a durable power of attorney, any benefits your spouse would have received through your will while you were married are automatically revoked once the divorce is final. However, you should still legally change the will and indicate that all other versions are invalid.
You may have named your spouse as a beneficiary on a number of different accounts and policies. You should review all retirement accounts, employee benefit plans, payable upon death accounts, life insurance policies, and other similar contracts. Just as with wills and power of attorney, any benefits your spouse would have received under these plans are automatically revoked.
Still, to avoid confusion and to ensure the paperwork is accurate, you should update these yourself. Doing so will also give you a chance to name other beneficiaries that you may wish to receive those benefits now. For example, if you had children with your spouse and only your spouse was named as a beneficiary, you should change the plans to name your children as beneficiaries. Sometimes, you are required to maintain life insurance if you have to pay alimony or child support. When this is the case, you may have to reaffirm your former spouse as the beneficiary.
Our Family Lawyers in Orlando Can Help with All Aspects of Your Divorce
If you are getting a divorce, our Orlando family lawyers at O’Mara Law Group can help with every aspect of your case to ensure your rights are protected. Call us today at 407-634-6604 or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation with one of our skilled attorneys and to learn more about how we can help.