If you have completed a
divorce then you don’t need me to tell you that it is among the most trying
and difficult times in a person’s life. The sacrifices that you
have made and the changes that you are still bound to encounter make life
after a divorce in many ways as difficult as life during a divorce. So
much work has been done yet so much more is required.
Think back to everything that you had to think about during your divorce:
your children, your finances and your post-divorce life all weighed heavily
on you most likely. Sure, you had an attorney to assist you and your family
was by your side through the process but in general these were concerns
that you had to consider for yourself.
With all that was on your plate some items were bound to fall between the cracks.
Insurance policies and their affect on your post divorce world were probably among
those items. If you and your ex-spouse shared insurance coverage it is
obvious that you and he/she no longer desire to have that be the case
once your divorce has been finalized.
While the policies need to be updated to reflect your current situation,
the coverage on your existing policies must not lapse or you will risk
you and your children being uncovered. Today’s blog post from the
Law Office of Bryan Fagan will discuss how to handle various sorts of insurance once your divorce
has been completed.
Coordination is key when it comes to insurance
As you found out in your divorce, it is necessary to work with others to
accomplish your goals. Handling insurance after a divorce takes the assistance
of your ex-spouse and your insurance provider as well. During the divorce
your attorney likely helped you to negotiate the terms of your divorce
settlement to maintain insurance coverage for yourself and your children.
While this may not have been easy, especially if you and your ex-spouse
did not see eye to eye on this subject, it was necessary.
Now that your divorce is complete, your ability to coordinate and communicate
with others is going to come in handy. For instance, if you are covered
by your ex-spouse’s employer provided
health insurance it is likely that while your children will still be covered after the
divorce you will not be. As a result you will need to go out into the
open market and purchase health insurance or enroll in your employer offered
health insurance during an open enrollment period. It is possible that
because of your divorce you meet a requirement to specially enroll in
a plan but you would need to verify this.
In the divorce you may have been awarded the family home as yours separate
and apart from your spouse. This means that your spouse’s name should
be removed from your
homeowner’s insurance policy. You can contact the company through which your homeowner’s
insurance is provided to have this done. It may also be a good time to
shop around to purchase homeowner’s insurance and see if you can
be covered for less of a monthly premium.
On the other hand, your spouse may have been awarded the family home in
the divorce and you now need to look for a place to live after the divorce.
If this is the case I would recommend that you look into renter’s
insurance even if the apartment complex you plan to live in does not require
it. Your personal property can be protected against theft, fire or other
extreme events if renter’s insurance is held.
The reason I highly recommend renter’s insurance after a divorce
is that you can likely not afford to “self insure” your belongings
at this point. If you paid for your divorce with credit cards then the
last thing you would want to do is add to that debt load with the purchase
of a new coach or television.
What about Life Insurance?
If you have people in your life (children, elderly parents) that depend
upon your income then you need to have
life insurance in the event that something happens to you and your income is no longer
an option to live off of. In the event that you do not have any children
and have nobody in your life that is reliant on your income, you likely
just need to have a few thousand dollars in the bank in the event that
you die. This way your parents or other family members could afford a
basic funeral and burial should you unfortunately pass away.
If you already have a life insurance policy in place then you would need
to review it and change the beneficiaries currently on that policy. Some
divorce decrees mandate that you maintain your ex-spouse’s name
as a beneficiary on your life insurance policy. If you are ordered to
pay child support this is a functional substitute for your monthly child
support payments should you pass away. The money can be invested and grow
to mirror whatever contributions should have been made in the form of
child support had you not passed away.
Two main types of life insurance are sold in the United States: term and
whole life insurance. I’ll let you do your own research on which
type is preferable. But on the whole term life insurance offers greater
protection at a fraction of the cost of whole life insurance.
Questions about insurance coverage during and after a divorce? Contact
the Law Office of Bryan Fagan
If you have questions about insurance and its effect on your life after
a divorce please do not hesitate to
Law Office of Bryan Fagan today. We offer free of charge consultations six days a week. Our attorneys
represent clients across southeast Texas and we would be honored to do
the same for you and your family. Give us a call today to schedule a time
to come in and talk with us and have your questions answered.