There’s nothing that can prepare you for losing your spouse. Even if they were suffering from a lengthy illness, it’s devastating and the grief can feel overwhelming. The last thing you want to do is plan for a life without them.
Having to make decisions about what should happen to your property and belongings after your death is an unfortunate necessity. If you have children, it’s even more important. The loss of your significant other likely means there are things that need to be updated in your estate plan to reflect this and make sure your loved ones are cared for.
You may need to update your will
It’s common for a married couple to have wills that mirror each other. This ensures that, on the death of one spouse, all the jointly owned belongings pass immediately to the other. This avoids any risk of losing the home, for example. As an example, if your husband left everything to you in his will, everything he owned separately and you own jointly then becomes yours.
If you have step-children (i.e. your husband’s biological children) and they are not accounted for in your will, they will receive nothing from their father’s estate when you pass away. All of your belongings will then pass to the children you had together and any children you have from other relationships. It’s crucial, therefore, to ensure that your will accurately reflects your wishes for what should happen to your estate.
You may need to appoint a new power of attorney
If your husband or wife was your power of attorney, you’ll need to appoint someone else to handle things. Even though you might not want to think about it and it may be the last thing on your mind, it’s a good idea to go through this process as soon as you can. In the event you require support, it ensures that you will be taken care of by someone you love and trust.
Updating your estate plan when you’ve recently lost a loved one can be very emotionally difficult. There are professionals who can guide you through the process and make everything as simple as possible.