When you wed your spouse in Woodland Hills, you likely did so with every intention of providing him or her with the very best you could, both during your lives together and once you passed on. Yet, as we all know, different factors can often cause the feelings a couple shares to sour and eventually seek a divorce. All too often, clients come to us here at The Law Offices of Alice A. Salvo in a panic after learning that the loved ones whose estates they are parties to failed to amend their wills following their divorces. If you forget to take this all-important step, does that mean that your ex-spouse still maintains whatever rights and powers you endowed upon him or her in your will?
According to the California Probate Code, the answer to that question is a resounding no. The guidelines for how divorce or the dissolution of a marriage affects estate planning can be found in Section 6122 of the Code. Here, it states that if you divorce after having executed a will, the dissolution of your marriage automatically does the following:
- Revokes any dispositions or appointments of property made to your ex-spouse in the will
- Revokes any provisions nominating him or her as your executor, trustee, conservator or guardian
- Revokes any other special powers of appointment conferred on him or her in the will
If your will remains unamended, then rather than your assets and property passing to your ex-spouse upon your death, they will be dispersed in accordance with the state's guidelines governing intestate succession. Keep in mind, however, that only the dissolution of your marriage revokes these provisions of your will. A legal separation does not.
You can learn more about estate planning concerns following divorce by continuing to browse through our site.