Do you have a plan for your property and assets in the event of your death? Will your estate be divided among several different beneficiaries, or will most—or all—of it be inherited by your spouse? For many people, leaving everything to their spouse seems like the most logical choice, and in large number of cases, that might be true. But what happens in the event of a divorce? If your will directed your estate to be granted to your spouse, you will need sit down with an experienced will or probate lawyer to develop are more appropriate plan.
Divorce and Probate Law
According to the Illinois Probate Act, your will, even if it contains provisions for your ex-spouse, cannot be revoked by the existence of a divorce decree. All of the terms of your will remain in force with the exception of those granting powers or property to your former spouse. As long as the will was executed prior to the divorce being finalized, the will is to treated as if your spouse died before you. This means that conditional clauses may be enacted or, in the event you named no conditional beneficiaries, the law of intestate succession will apply.
If your will does not sufficiently address a scenario in which your spouse precedes you in death, the disposition of your estate may be difficult to determine. Reviewing your will after divorce will give you’re the chance to completely reevaluate your new lifestyle and situation. Taking your spouse out of consideration can allow you, for example, to divide your estate among your children. Alternatively, you may choose to have your assets liquidated and donated to charity, a choice you may have been less likely to make while you were still married.
Legal Counsel for Probate Matters
Whether you are looking to amend your existing will or to defend the validity of a will in which you were named a beneficiary, contact an experienced probate attorney in Orland Park. We will meet with you to discuss your case and help you find the best course of action. Call 708-518-8200 to schedule your free consultation today. With office locations in Orland Park, Crete, and Chicago, we are proud to serve the needs of clients throughout Northern Illinois.