Divorce is a common part of life. Though you may not have expected your marriage to end, it is time to prepare for your life as a single person. That could mean setting up a home, taking up new hobbies — and revising your estate plan.

If you have not looked at your estate plan lately, you should take a look. It is likely that your ex is named in several roles that you would rather they did not play. Even though you are still relatively young and in good health, you cannot know what the future holds. It is smart to update your estate plan as soon after your divorce as possible.

Four things to consider changing now that you are divorced

  • Will and trust. It is common for your spouse to be the primary beneficiary to your trust, especially if your children are still young. You may want that to continue, but you may also want to change it so that your children get the money. You can use a trust to provide for your kids while having the trustee control the finances, not your ex.
  • Advance health care directive and living wills. Your ex probably will not be around the make healthcare decisions if you become incapacitated, and you may no longer trust them to handle the job anyway.
  • Power of attorney. Similarly, it is probably time to designate someone else you trust to handle your finances if you become unable to do so.
  • Life insurance and retirement accounts. These documents fall outside of your will. If you do not want your ex to be the beneficiary of your life insurance policy or your retirement account, now is the time to change them.

Taking care of these updates can give you the assurance that your estate will be handled the way you want. Discuss the changes you want to make with your estate planning attorney.