Whether the desire for a divorce is mutual or you were blindsided by the news, going through a divorce can feel like your entire life has been tossed up in the air. With so much going on and so much at stake, it is crucial to make sure you control what you can and look out for your interests as much as possible.
One crucial step you need to take after your divorce is to review your financial and insurance accounts to make sure your chosen beneficiaries reflect your current wishes. If you are like the majority of married people, your soon-to-be ex is the beneficiary on most of your accounts and stands to inherit your assets in the event of your untimely death.
Updating Beneficiaries Is a Change You Can Make On Your Own
While updating your will, changing trusts and other actions are best left to an attorney who has estate and probate experience, updating your accounts is an action you can take on your own to protect your interests as you embark on this new chapter of your life.
Accounts to review and update include:
- Retirement accounts, such as 401(k), IRA or Roth IRA
- Brokerage accounts or mutual funds
- Life insurance policies, including employer-sponsored coverage
- Any company-provided benefits such as life insurance or long-term care insurance
- Savings accounts, checking accounts and CDs
Overlooking these accounts and failing to update your beneficiaries could leave people like your children without the resources they need while providing your ex with a financial windfall you did not intend to provide them.
An experienced divorce attorney can help you make sure you have your bases covered and help you avoid any costly mistakes related to the divorce process.