You and your spouse get married and you're wildly in love. You make a will, and your spouse is obviously the beneficiary, getting everything you'd leave behind. Five years go by. The marriage fizzles out and you get a divorce. In the chaos and all of the other paperwork, you forget about your will entirely.
If this happens, your ex is now the beneficiary of your will. You may have had to hand over roughly half of your belongings in the divorce. Do you really want to give him or her the other half if you pass away first?
A will may not be part of the divorce proceedings, but it's important to update it after the divorce. You may even want to do this while you're going through the divorce process. It can take some time, but you know the marriage is going to end.
Who should you leave things to when you update the will? The options are extensive. If you get married again, you may just give everything to your new spouse. If you had children from the first marriage, you may use the will to make sure your estate goes to the kids. You may even be interested in creating a trust that distributes your assets to charities and non-profits that you support.
The answer is different for everyone, but the key is to remember that your will is a legally binding document. Be sure you know what you need to do to legally change it and re-file it so that it really reflects your wishes and desires.
Source: FindLaw, "Changing Your Will After a Divorce," Deanne Katz, Esq., accessed March 17, 2017