Articles Posted in Divorce

Divided wedding cake topperOnce you're divorced you should immediately create a new estate plan — a will or revocable living trust, a healthcare power of attorney, and a living will ("pull the plug") designee. Read on for more estate planning must-do’s regarding divorce.

A recent article in the The Huffington Post, titled “Divorce and Money,”says that you should always listen to your attorney about the applicable laws in your state regarding divorce and your estate. In addition, the article says that you should also look at the following issues.

The division of property in a divorce is typically not taxable to either party. However, if instead of dividing marital property, one spouse agrees to monthly maintenance (alimony), this will be taxed as ordinary income. And it’s deductible to the paying spouse. The original article also notes that the spouse receiving the maintenance checks must make a quarterly estimated federal and state tax payment, so you need to plan accordingly.

Divided wedding cake topperFailure to do so — or to alert all relevant parties to the changes — could result in certain assets and benefits unintentionally going to your former spouse or his or her family upon your death.

A MarketWatch article, titled Just divorced? Don’t forget to separate your estate plans, shares a true life story of why we all need to pay close attention to our estate plans after a divorce.

Robyn Lewis executed a will in 1996 that named her then-husband to receive her property after her death. The property included the house—a home that had been in her family for generations. In her will she designated her then-father-in-law as the secondary beneficiary. Robyn ended up divorcing her husband, but no record was found of a change in her secondary beneficiary after the divorce.

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