If you heeded the advice of estate planning experts in Florida and already drafted a will, then you likely feel well-prepared should you meet an untimely end. Yet it is important to remember that estate planning is not an event; rather, it is a process that requires frequent revisiting so your plans reflect your true wishes (thus lowering the potential for disputes when your estate goes to probate).
One potential dispute that many who come to us here at The Law Office of Nicole C. Morris, P.A. worry about is an ex-spouse’s laying claim to a decedent’s estate. Their concern is that if a loved one failed to update their will after their divorce, their ex-spouse stands to benefit from their estate. If you also worry about this potential, knowing Florida law in this particular regard may put your mind at ease.
The effect of divorce on estate plans
Per Section 732.507 of Florida’s state statutes, any provisions you included in your will that bequeath assets or property to your ex-spouse (or name them to roles in the administration of your estate) automatically become invalid upon the completion of your divorce proceedings. From a legal perspective, it would be as though your ex-spouse preceded you in death.
Should you maintain your ex-spouse’s role in your estate?
With the concern over your ex-spouse inadvertently inheriting your estate addressed, you should next consider whether it may be advantageous to maintain their role in your estate plans. If you have young children, you may want to keep your ex-spouse as part of your estate to help manage your children’s inherited assets until they reach the age of majority.