Estate Planning Considerations for Divorcing Couples
When you’re going through a divorce, estate planning is a necessary but sometimes tedious process. It’s
not just rewriting your wills, either. Estate planning can rearrange several areas of your old life and
rework them to suit your new one. Whether you have children or are merely sorting your affairs, estate
planning is much easier if you have legal help.
What Should You Discuss During Estate Planning?
It’s easy to forget how much goes into estate planning, and the number of documents, conditions, and
discussions can quickly overwhelm you. Before you begin this process, know what you’ll talk about and
how you want to handle it, so you can be organized and prepared when you enter the room.
Some of the documents you may wish to discuss with your former partner and your attorney include:
- Living Will
- Healthcare Proxy
- Beneficiary Designation Form
- Financial Power of Attorney
- Retirement Assets
- Life Insurance Policies
- Guardianship Decisions
While not everyone needs to account for each of these items—for example, not everyone has children,
and therefore guardianship decisions do not apply—you should know who is listed under each one that
does apply to you. That will help expedite the process.
What are Automatic Orders?
New York has a law called Automatic Orders that apply during a collaborative divorce. You can
find Automatic Orders under 22 NYCRR section 202.16-a.
These Orders state that while a divorce is ongoing, neither person can:
- Transfer, assign, alter, remove, or withdraw property
- Access retirement accounts
- Accrue debt that affects the estate
In addition, the party responsible for medical insurance must keep insurance in place for both parties and their children until the divorce is finalized. Other types of insurance, including home and auto,
should also remain active.
Estate Planning with Soren Law Group
If you need help with estate planning on Staten Island, talk to the experienced divorce attorneys at Soren Law Group. We’ll work with you to ensure that your affairs are settled equitably and that you have all the information you need. Call us at 718-815-4500 or contact us online to request a consultation.