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Incapacity Protection While Going Through a Divorce

Marriage is a very tricky thing for many of us. Our marriages may end in a divorce and as an estate planning attorney, I always ask my clients, is your estate plan divorce proof? You may be in a situation where your spouse and you are now in divorce court. What could you have set up so if you become incapacitated during the divorce, someone else can step in place for you and move forward with your divorce? For many of us, we may have a power of attorney. Can your power of attorney file for a divorce for you? Can your power of attorney finish a divorce that you have filed? What estate planning tools can you use in the middle of a divorce while your power of attorney, your durable power attorney will not be able to file for you? The power of attorney can hire an attorney for you. This power of attorney can walk alongside the attorney because this person knows you and knows what your wishes are so he or she can negotiate through the divorce for you, speak with the guardian for you or if it’s a third party that’s going to be nominated and appointed for your guardian, to walk alongside you to make sure the division of the marital assets is actually something you would agree to. You can also look at the medical power attorney.

How can a medical power attorney help you in the middle of a divorce? Your medical power attorney can ensure it’s not that spouse you’re divorcing who will be making medical decisions for you.

If you have a medical power of attorney, then you can designate someone who’s not the divorcing spouse so if there’s a medical decision, you don’t have to worry about someone making a decision that’s not in your best interest. And I guarantee you sometimes in a divorce people get injured, people get sick and who is making those decisions? That same spouse you’re divorcing; therefore you can use a medical power of attorney along with the durable power of attorney to make sure while you’re going through this tumultuous part of your life, your estate planning tools are there to protect you.

What else can you use? When I counsel my clients, some of them may be going through a divorce and I will say to them: Have you updated your beneficiaries on your wills? Have you updated the beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and so forth?

They will say to me; Oh Megone, the standing order says I can’t move things around. I can’t do those things. The standing order me say that. However, Texas Law says you can update your will during a divorce. Therefore, you can use your estate planning tools like your will, your durable power attorney, your medical power attorney and even a trust to make sure if, God forbid something should happen to you while you’re going through your divorce, your spouse will not leave holding 100% of all your assets.

Estate planning tools can be very powerful and it can be a very useful tool even if you’re going through a divorce.

Megone Trewick, our Lead Estate Planning, Probate and Guardianship Attorney is ready and waiting to help you today.

Call our office at: 281-810-9760 to begin helping your loved ones’ today!

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