While going through a divorce is complex enough for more estranged Louisiana couples, ending a marriage has a number of other issues that need to be addressed before the divorce is actually finalized. One of these important issues is reviewing an estate plan.

One of the first things a person should do is change his or her power of attorney. If a durable power of attorney was signed, the former spouse still has access to all marital accounts and assets even while the person is still competent. This includes separate property, such as an inheritance. The power of attorney should be revoked, especially if the divorce is not amicable. Further, the person’s will should also be updated so that the former spouse is not in charge of his or her estate. An alternate guardian can be determined in the event that the former spouse becomes unfit to care for any children.

In addition to updating the will, this is also a good time for a person to determine whether or not he or she wants to leave assets to the former spouse. Many only leave what the former spouse is entitled to under the law. If the former spouse is disinherited, he or she could contest the will.

Even if a former couple is able to work together, going through the divorce process is not easy due to the number of issues that must be resolved. A family law attorney may assist with helping a person navigate the process while determining what the financial consequences of keeping certain assets would be. Further, the attorney may go over finances and help a person understand how the divorce will have an impact on his or her retirement.