Posted on : October 31, 2017, By: Christopher Hildebrand
For The Newly Divorced in Arizona
For the newly divorced in Arizona, a change in existing estate plan documents may be necessary to avoid any claims by the former spouse against the decedent’s estate. While California law invalidates a gift or disposition in a will or trust to an ex-spouse upon a decree of divorce, the disposition can be enforced if there is clear and convincing evidence that the decedent intended the ex-spouse to receive the gift or disposition after the divorce. A legal separation that does not divide the marital assets will have no effect on a trust. In most cases, a divorcé or divorcée should update any existing estate plan documents for several reasons.
For The Newly Divorced.
Estate plan documents typically include durable power of attorney and agent for healthcare documents naming the former spouse as the first agent. There couldn’t be a worse situation in which the ex-spouse with a grudge has the authority to write checks out of the ex-spouse’s estate the power to withhold life-sustaining nutrition and hydration over a former spouse who can no longer communicate. A simple update to these documents can help ensure that the prepared person’s wishes are observed.
Often a couple will have an estate plan drafted after marriage and never revisit the plan, leading to potential disaster in the event of a divorce. A typical estate plan will clearly name a spouse as a beneficiary. An example of this in a will is, “To my wife, Jane Smith, I leave X.” The will example could merely identify Jane Smith as “the Jane Smith who is at this time my wife.” Other provisions in the will could require a gift to Jane even if the couple is no longer divorced, such as, “A divorce or annulment shall have no effect on the disposition or gift to Jane Smith.” Such “honeymoon clauses” written after the nuptials could catch the newly divorced off guard if they haven’t looked at their estate plan since it was drafted.
Estate planners know the kinds of questions to ask regarding the estate, therefore, they will almost certainly ask if a life insurance policy benefits the former spouse. Such policies for the benefit of the former spouse are not invalidated by a divorce decree. Since many insurance policies are designed to pay the death benefit to the surviving spouse, a new divorce usually requires a review of beneficiary designations in insurance policies. It is advised to consult with an experienced estate attorney such as the Estate Attorney Rocklin CA locals trust.
If you have a question about divorce in Arizona, please call to speak to one of our experienced Scottsdale and Phoenix Arizona divorce attorneys at (480)305-8300.
I just want to again thank the Firm for working with me all that it has. I could not have done anything without everyone's assistance. You, Chris and Stacey have been and continue to provide me with compassion and hard work towards my case. Also a very special thanks to Kip for taking my case in the beginning. Also continued support from him and his dedication to providing me with his expertise in this matter.
Dear Stacey and Kip, How can I ever thank you enough for helping me through the most difficult time in my life? I couldn't put into words my heartfelt gratefulness. You both were so compassionate and professional at every given moment throughout this process with me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You helped me to regain my freedom.
Chris is a smart and aggressive attorney for his clients. Chris always tries to reach a fair settlement of his cases. I’ve represented clients when Chris was the opposing counsel and while he is professional and amicable to work with, he does not back off on what he needs to do for his client
I retained Hildebrand Law after interview a number of firms in the valley. Working with Michael C. was incredibly easy and informative. My case progressed in such a organized and thought out way to ensure that my needs were met. Michael was incredibly proactive and was able to see far ahead into my case to steer clear of some roadblocks. I would not hesitate to recommend Michael Clancy, and Hildebrand Law in general, to anyone.
I have worked with Hildebrand law for about 8 years. They are always ready to serve, provide guidance and give you a few options. When they provide you options they also take the time to walk you through the pros and cons of each and give you a recommendation of what is best, but will listen to you and support whatever course you choose after making and educated choice. I’d recommend them to my closest friends and feel Chris Hildebrand is now a friend to me.
Despite the unfortunate situation I found myself in, Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law helped me maneuver every step with professionalism, expertise, and even a sensitivity that was an added bonus.Chris and his staff helped me even when I didn't know I needed the help. In other words. . . they made sure we did not leave anything undone. And in the rare instance we needed the expertise of another professional, Chris knew exactly who to recommend.Chris also knew, because of his experience, what to anticipate down the road of litigation. That meant we were better prepared to meet the challenges head on, which lead to a more equitable and fair outcome. I appreciated that Chris did his best to meet my every need in a timely fashion, even if I had a simple question that required only a phone call or e-mail or if we needed to talk face-to-face.I highly recommend Chris Hildebrand @ Hildebrand Law, PC.
I cannot express enough how thankful I am that I found Hildrebrand Law. Chris Hildebrand is an excellent attorney who has my best interests in mind and always encourages me to do the right thing regardless of what the opposing party is doing. Chris knows family law very well and relies on that knowledge to format options and solutions for each situation that may arise. He knows what the Court expects and what will and will not be tolerated. He has attempted to settle this case quickly and as inexpensively as possible from the start. His paralegal, Laura, is remarkable. She is organized, quick to respond, and compassionate. Chris is well prepared with a binder full of detailed and organized information and that is likely due to her thorough skills and expertise. While getting a divorce that was unexpected is a painful and difficult process, Chris and Laura treat my family and I like friends rather than another just "client." I am hopeful that I do not need to recommend divorce lawyers to anyone in the future but if I do, Hildebrand Law will be a recommendation I would give hands down.
I interviewed several firms and selected Hildebrand Law for my difficult military divorce as a direct result of their whole family concern and integrity. During the interview process the professionals at Hildebrand Law were as concerned for the well being of my children as I was and ensured that they presented several options along the way to ensure that we protected my children's needs as well as my financial situation. At each decision point they laid out a clear path, how it impacted the children, the financial situation. They even reminded me that my ultimate stated goal was the best interest of my children each time the other party got particularly challenging and my frustration was getting the better of me. The owner handled my case personally and was exceptionally well versed in the unique aspects of a divorce involving the military and associated benefits. Won't need them again (fingers crossed!!! 🙂 ) but would totally recommend them to anyone!
We had a fairly complicated case in Family Court and Juvenile Court. Kip was an excellent attorney. He covered every base there was to cover and left no stone unturned. I would highly recommend him to anyone going through custody proceedings. Hildebrand Law is an excellent law firm and I am confident that Kip or any of their other attorneys would do an excellent job! Thanks Kip and Hildebrand Law!
The firm of Hildebrand Law is top notch. It's necessary to state again that Kent Millward is the epitome of excellence in a vast community of attorneys and will fight valiantly for you. We hired Kent and discovered a very good attorney with a good heart. For great family law representation and more this is the Law Firm for you. To Chris, Kent, Alison and all of Hildebrand Law,Thank you so much!
I first should comment on how I found this law firm. I am an attorney myself, though never licensed in Arizona. I moved to Arizona to rejoin my wife and son, who had moved out to Arizona ahead of me. Things soured. I don't know why, but they did.There was a particular issue for me with inherited property. I did some basic Internet research, and Hildebrand's name kept coming up as the author of scholarly articles on the issue concerning me. I asked that Hildebrand be assigned to my case. This was not possible, but his second in command, Mr. Micuda, took over, and Mr. Micuda knows his business.The initial scheduled 1 hour meeting ran for an hour and 45 minutes, and facts, law, and strategy were fully discussed. Throughout the case, everything was explained to me clearly, both verbally and in writing.Proceedings went forward without delay. Because I had selected one of the most prominent Domestic Relations firms in town, there was no serious opposition. This ended up being an essentially co-operative divorce between the two sides, the reasoning being to conserve assets rather than enrich lawyers.Through a series of 3 or 4 payments, I put up about $10,000 for fees and costs. I found the Hildebrand law firm's billings to be fair. They billed for work done; no padding. I am getting about 25% of what I paid in back, as a refund.The matter was done in about 6 months: divorce, agreed property settlement, agreed support provisions as to my son. My matters were handled by an attorney and paralegal team, and handled efficiently.Mine was not a "big" case in terms of its economic value to anyone, but I did not feel like a second or third class citizen; I was treated with the same respect, even though the dispute was over a condo, as opposed to, say, a Scottsdale mansion with land.This may sound strange, but i was actually somewhat sorry that the matter had to come to a conclusion. I felt that I had been treated like a friend, not just an anonymous customer. Being a practical man, I realize it's down to sending a Christmas or other seasonal card.As I said at the outset, I found this place by dint of my own research. I feel I am a lucky man that I did.