When you are completing paperwork in order to purchase a life insurance policy or contribute to a 401(k) plan, you must designate a primary and secondary beneficiary. Your primary beneficiary is the person whom you have chosen to receive the proceeds of your life insurance policy or 401(k) plan if you pass away. A secondary beneficiary is a person who will receive the proceeds of these accounts if the primary beneficiary is unable to receive the funds, such as if the primary beneficiary is deceased. Therefore, it is essential that you keep your beneficiary designations up to date on all policies and accounts at all times, so that you can ensure that any funds from these accounts go to the people whom you want to have them. Even if your will says something different, your beneficiary designations will determine who receives the funds from those accounts or policies.
Divorce is one of those major life events during which you should review your beneficiary designations. In most cases, you probably had made your spouse your primary beneficiary when you got married. After a divorce, however, you most likely do not want to leave your ex-spouse named as the primary beneficiary of your accounts. In this case, you must take steps to change your beneficiary designation for each account. It is easy to overlook one or more accounts with beneficiary designations, so you should be sure to inventory all of the retirement and investment accounts and life insurance policies so that you can change the beneficiary designation. You should do this as quickly as possible in order to avoid problems in the event of your sudden death.
As you can see from the content of this post, there are important issues related to your divorce that you may not have even considered. No matter what issues arise in your divorce proceedings, we can help. The Law Offices of Vincent W. Davis & Associates have handled countless divorce, paternity, child custody, child support, and spousal support cases throughout the years. Do not hesitate to contact an experienced California divorce attorney at our office if you have any questions about divorce, child custody, spousal support, or any other family law-related matters in the state of California.