Estate planning documents to revisit after a divorce in Minnesota
Divorce in Minnesota is a process that affects almost every single aspect of your life, including your legacy. Considering that you came together as one before the law while marrying, your documents and accounts were also joint and will continue to be so unless you take the needed steps to change that.
Revoke your will and create a new one
You will need to tear your current will up, contact your estate planning attorney, and draft a new will that reflects the new circumstances of your life. And if you don’t have a will, this is the time to create one. If you die with your previous will still valid, and you included your ex-spouse as a beneficiary, the court will honor that document even if that’s not what you want.
Update your beneficiaries
Your legal documents, such as life insurance, annuities, retirement accounts and bank accounts, may have named your ex-spouse as the primary or contingent beneficiary. It’s important to take a moment and review whom you’ve listed on those documents to make sure that they reflect what you desire.
Create new powers of attorney
You will also need to revoke and replace your powers of attorney when you divorce in Minnesota; otherwise, your ex-spouse will continue making decisions about your property and healthcare if you become incapacitated. Consider creating two separate powers of attorney: one for healthcare decisions and another for financial matters.
Consider a trust
Consider setting up a trust for minor children that you have from the marriage. This document allows you to name a trustee, a competent professional that you have full confidence in, to manage your assets on behalf of your children until they come of age or are in a position to handle their inheritance themselves. Moreover, there are also trusts you can use to provide for a child, relative or friend with special needs without jeopardizing their government benefits.
Updating your estate plan after a divorce in Minnesota is essential for protecting you, your assets and those you care about. This process should begin soon after you get your final divorce decree to prevent any issues in the future. It’s also important to familiarize yourself with Minnesota’s estate planning laws before you proceed.