Establish a Trust
A living will, also known as an advanced health care directive, is an estate planning document in which you appoint a person that would make medical decisions on your behalf when you become a victim of a medical emergency. With the document, you state clearly the type of health care you want during your last days.
Establish a durable Power of Attorney
Should you run into a sudden accident or a terminal illness causing incapacitation, a durable Power of Attorney document appoints a person to take charge of your financial and legal affairs on your behalf since you will no longer be able to attend to them yourself. If you had chosen your divorced spouse as your representative, ensure you revoke it and create a new one in which you appoint a trusted individual (could be your spouse or an adult child).
Many people forget to change the beneficiaries designated in their life insurance policies and IRAs when they get divorced, and it is important you do so as they eventually must go to your designated beneficiary in the form regardless of what your will or trust says. You may also consider leaving some assets — such as proceeds from an insurance policy — and then leave the rest to your children.
While designating your children as beneficiaries in any of these forms, never you name minors because those assets would never be bequeathed to them until they turn 18. The court would have to step in to appoint a guardian that would look after the asset for them until they attain that age. If you indeed have minors whom you want to benefit from your IRAs and insurance policies, then you should speak with a competent estate planning lawyer to access your options on how to avoid court intervention.
Know more about each other
As you get married, remember that each spouse is coming with his or her own past, assets, friends and families. A spouse may come with an old 401(k) plan or a small insurance policy which may have been seen to be insignificant and thus forgotten. Both of you have to open up about these assets, no matter how small they may seem, to avoid giving your grieving spouse financial and legal issues when you pass away.
Also, let your spouse know about your old friends, families and relatives who they may have to call on when something bad happens to you. Both of you should have contact information of the other spouse’s relatives and friends.