As a domicile of Texas, you may be able to rely on the state’s probate laws to a limited extent should you divorce. Almost all estate planning lawyers will recommend periodic reviews of estate planning documents. Your estate planning attorney will most likely ask you to review your estate plan during or after important life-changing events. One of these events is divorce.
At least one time after your divorce, you should sit down with your estate planning attorney to review your estate plan. Although seeking professional legal advice is the best course of action, you may be able to rely on our state’s default divorce and probate laws to some extent. According to the Texas Probate Code, previous bequests in favor of your spouse are void upon divorce. As such, if you drafted your will during marriage but subsequently divorce, your prior bequests to your former spouse become void by operation of law after divorce. In some cases, the default probate laws in Texas may not sufficiently protect your interests. If a court finds some evidence that you may have intended to leave your former spouse as a beneficiary, it may leave parts of your Will intact. In this case, your former spouse may be able to enforce some provisions of your Will.
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