Share on Facebook
Share on X
Share on LinkedIn
By Jason Carrozza

Hi Everyone,

Happy Wednesday!!! I’m choosing to ignore the snow that was on the ground this morning and focus on the fact that Spring is in fact coming. It just so happens, so is our latest Spring seminar! Tomorrow at 6:30, I will am presenting Estate Planning Basics at the Norfolk Public Library. Registration should be done through the Norfolk Recreation Department at but please feel free to pass the information along or let me know if you are coming.

I also want to take this time to wish everybody this week a happy holiday, whether you’re celebrating Easter or Passover, we are wishing you a very happy time with your families!

This week we are going to talk about Estate Planning and Divorce.

Going through a divorce can be one of the most tumultuous and disrupting experiences for a family. All of a sudden things can be drastically different, the family unit changed forever. Finances need to be sorted and decisions need to be made.

Something that quite regularly is ignored in the midst of this craziness is creating a new estate plan. Below are the top 3 reasons why somebody should create a new estate plan after divorcing:

  1. You need a new decision maker for crisis situations: after a separation it’s important to consider who, in essence, is going to be your new emergency contact. Suddenly your partner is no longer an option and this role needs filling. While this decision is difficult it’s necessary to appoint a medical proxy, somebody who will make important medical decisions for you if necessary.
  2. You need a new decision maker for your finances: equally important as your medical decisions, is your financial decisions. It’s important to update your Power of Attorney. This is the person who will care for your assets in case you are unable to do so. It will also be necessary for you to decide who will inherit your assets upon your passing. Final asset distribution needs to be revisited in your Last Will and Testament or your Revocable Living Trust.
  3. You need to change your beneficiary designations: quite commonly I see folks maintain their ex-spouses as beneficiaries on bank accounts and life insurance policies. Now, if it’s court-ordered that a policy must remain in place as collateral for child support or alimony – keep the policy in place! However, don’t simply hand over funds if it’s not necessary. Update your accounts to reflect those whom you’d actually like to see receive your money.

Separations are full of transitions. A new estate plan can be the last thing one wants to think about. Yet, it’s important to be sure you know and trust whoever may be at the helm of your assets and your life. It’s important to always put forth your best advocate.

If you happen to know of anybody who has gone through a divorce and you’re not quite sure if they’ve updated their estate plan, simply ask. If the answer is no, consider forwarding them this post, or feel free to forward my contact information. I’d love to speak with anybody out there who is looking for start a fresh.

Until next time.

About the Author
Jason M. Carrozza is a partner and founder of Family Legal Partners, P.C., previously owning Carrozza Law Office, P.C., which focused on estate planning, probate administration, and business formation. He was recognized as a Massachusetts Rising Star by New England Super Lawyers and Boston Magazine in 2014, 2015, and 2016, an honor given to no more than 5% of attorneys in the state. Graduating magna cum laude from New England Law and ranked 3rd in his class, Jason completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Tampa. He gained experience in civil litigation, divorce, corporate, and insurance defense law firms before opening his practice in 2004. Jason is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts Courts, is a trained family law mediator, and a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. He has volunteered for pro bono panels with Senior Partners For Justice, South Middlesex Legal Services, and the New Center for Legal Advocacy. Dedicated to his community, he has served in various leadership roles including vice president of the Bellingham Business Association and Master of Excelsior Lodge of Massachusetts Freemasons. He teaches Estate Planning Basics at the Tri County Continuing Adult Education program and speaks at estate planning seminars throughout the year. An avid baseball fan and history enthusiast, Jason enjoys outdoor activities and spending time with his family. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katrina, and their children, Zachary and Madelyn.