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Steps to take after a divorce is final

While a divorce can feel exhausting, the work does not necessarily end when the final paperwork is signed and submitted. Estranged Louisiana couples may still have several other issues to address.

For example, some people may need to change their name on their driver's license and other documents. Others might need to remove a former spouse from a health insurance plan. A commonly overlooked step is changing the estate plan. This can mean altering a will or a trust and drawing up new powers of attorney. People should also check their beneficiary designations on insurance policies and retirement accounts and change them if necessary.

Dividing assets usually involves additional steps. Some may need to be retitled. The procedures for doing this may vary depending on what the asset is. A home may need a quitclaim deed to remove one party from the title, and a refinance may be necessary to take a party off the mortgage. All joint accounts should be separated and ex-spouses removed as users on accounts. Non-IRA retirement accounts must be divided with a document known as a qualified domestic relations order. Distributions from these and from IRAs can be rolled into other accounts.

For parents, there may be a number of other post-divorce issues to address as well. They may have a custody and visitation agreement in place, but co-parenting does not always go smoothly. There are online tools that may help parents communicate, and courts generally prefer that parents try to work out minor differences between themselves. However, if one parent needs to relocate or change the amount of child support paid, it might be necessary to return to court.

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