What to include in a post-divorce will

One of the sunny sides to divorce is that an older, more mature version of yourself gets the chance to plan out your new future. Whether you are just beginning the process or you have come through the other side, your will and estate plan should reflect your new direction.

If you do not have a will, you are not alone. A recent survey shows more than half of American adults do not have a valid will. Either way, divorce provides you an opportunity to review and update your existing will, or establish a new one.

What to include in a post-divorce will:

  • Property. You will need to determine who receives your property. This is your fresh start. Dividing property can be problematic, however. If you have more than one child, what happens if one wants to sell and the other does not? An experienced estate planning attorney can walk you through a wide variety of options to help you in making informed decisions about your future.
  • Guardians. Every parent must plan for the worst, by deciding who will care for your minor children should something happen to you. Carefully consider your options and then approach the subject of legal guardianship with whomever you choose, keeping in mind that this can be a sensitive subject for everyone involved. After receiving their consent, you will need to officially name them in your will.
  • Executor. You will need to name the executor of your estate. This person will be responsible for taking care of everything you have left behind. They will manage your money and property, and pay off all remaining debts. Obviously, this is an enormous responsibility, which again, requires secure consent before making it official in your will.

As you prepare for the future, take time to reflect on how far you’ve come. Think about all the challenges you’ve successfully worked through and how you’ve grown stronger because of it. Take every measure possible, like updating your will and estate plan, to protect this new future that you have worked so hard to attain.

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