Florida is a hot destination for retirees. However, not all couples who stay in the sunshine state remain married. Many married couples designate their partner as the inheritors of their estates, but divorce often means changing that designation.

According to SmartAsset.com, spouses “lose all inheritance rights” following a divorce. If you were relying on inheritance law to sort the estate upon your passing, now is the time to create a last will and testament. Any biological children retain their inheritance rights upon your passing.

Since divorce changes the nature of inheritance laws, it is a good idea to create an estate plan following divorce or amend one already in place. Common documents include the last will and testament, power of attorneys, living trust and living will.

While updating the estate planning documents, it is a good idea to look at all of your beneficiaries. Chances are that you designated your ex-spouse as sole beneficiary for retirement accounts and insurance policies. Now is a good time to update those to a child, relative or another designee.

Dying without an estate plan in place can prove problematic for those left behind. Whoever inherits the estate through Florida law must divide the estate often relying on interstate succession laws. A will helps eliminate ambiguity and ensures that your wishes for your property happen the way you wish with less hassle on those left behind.

Any major life event may require an update to your estate plan. Evaluate your estate plan soon after the divorce finalizes to protect your assets and loved ones. This information is intended only to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.