Although you and your partner would have had your differences when filing for divorce, it would be extreme to think that you would wish the worst on them such as death.
However, it may have you wondering might happen if your ex passes away. On one hand, it would make your divorce go away but on the other hand, the support that you were receiving from them would also go away.
Because of that, it’s worth considering the options that you have to support your children.
Won’t the children automatically receive an inheritance if your ex passes away?
It’s common for divorced parents to assume that their children will receive an inheritance if their ex-partner were to pass away, but it can be dangerous to make that assumption. Even if your ex has a lot of money, you’ll have no control over what they decide to do with it – which means there’s a possibility your children could be left with no inheritance and you could be left without support.
This is why it’s important to explore all avenues in order to secure support for your children in case your ex passes away.
Securing Your Children’s Futures If Your Ex Passes Away
1. Plan in advance
To ensure that your children’s future is secure, be sure to cover these issues during your divorce:
- Ensure your ex maintains life insurance and has the children as beneficiaries for as long as they are required to pay child support.
- Have your ex open a trust account in the names of your children that they can pay into regularly.
- Ask your ex-partner to maintain the children as beneficiaries on retirement accounts for as long as they need to pay for child support.
2. Cover all possible outcomes in your divorce documents
If you wish for either of the above to be possible options for your children, this needs to be stated clearly in your divorce documents. If it’s not stated or agreed upon between the two parties, then there is no obligation for your partner’s estate to provide child support after his/her death. Read through the divorce documents carefully to ensure that there’s a requirement for a life insurance policy and/or money set aside in a trust to cover the child support payments if your ex passes away.
3. Check the circumstances of your ex-partner’s life insurance policy
The most practical way support can be provided if either party were to pass away is through life insurance. Your children’s financial futures can be secured if life insurance policies are maintained and premiums on the policy are paid. Including a proof requirement in the divorce judgment can reassure you that payments are being made and your children are secure financially – or better still, you should be the policy owner to ensure that the policy doesn’t lapse for any reason. The monthly premium amount can be added to the support you’ll be receiving from your ex to make sure you can afford to pay.
4. Do your bit for your children
Although it helps to have the support of your ex-partner, you shouldn’t solely depend on their income to support your children. Consider taking out life insurance and creating a trust yourself, even if you don’t earn as much as your ex-partner.
You should consider making a will – or changing your will, if the most recent one was made before your divorce – to support those you love the most. To ensure that your will is written correctly, you can retain a Trusts and Estates attorney (known as will writing solicitors in the UK) who can help you step by step in the will-writing process.
Going through a divorce is hard, but dealing with a death can be even harder. There’s never anything wrong with planning ahead and getting the foundations sorted for any possibility that can occur. Exploring all these possibilities during your divorce will be the best way forward. Complications are less likely to arise if they’re addressed sooner rather than later.
Jamie Costello works as a Junior Legal Assistant in the U.K. who uses his knowledge to provide insightful articles on related topics in the legal sector. To develop his knowledge and make progress in the sector he has recently been researching dispute matters. In his spare time, he enjoys cycling.