Updating Important Documents After Divorce

When a divorce is finalized, most people are ready to set aside legalities and get on with life. Before you do, there are a few important actions you should take to protect your financial well-being in the long run.

Divorce sets the stage for the future. It also affects your identity and life planning in a number of ways. Take care of the following details now to avoid unpleasant surprises or delays down the line:

  • Estate plans - There's no time like the present to update estate planning documents including your will, advanced directives, insurance beneficiaries and other affairs. A skilled legal or financial adviser helps you make good decisions and understand the consequences of structuring your newly formed estate.
  • Real property - Ensure that the property you own is titled appropriately after your divorce. Be sure the name of your spouse is taken off your mortgage or lease.
  • Retirement planning - Depending on your age at divorce, revisiting your retirement plan is essential. If your divorce involved a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO), it is important to understand the details and tax consequences of transferring wealth. If you are approaching retirement, be sure you understand the options concerning Social Security benefits.
  • Titled accounts - You might be surprised at the number of accounts to be updated after divorce. A short list includes your driver's license, safety deposit box, automobile registration, medical records, subscriptions, bank accounts and other services. Take the time to change the titles on accounts you can identify now, and change others as they become apparent.
  • Credit report - Obtain a copy of your credit report. Carefully review the report for errors, open accounts or loans, and provide updated information where needed. Maintaining a good credit rating after your divorce is essential to a healthy financial future.

As your divorce concludes, take care of details now to create a more stable future. Consult a family law attorney in Fairfield County for guidance.

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