Florida’s New Beneficiary Designation Law

Effective July 1, 2012, Florida Statute 732.703,  provides that the portion of the beneficiary designation made in favor of  former spouse is void upon the dissolution or annulment of the marriage to the decedent.  This is a welcomed change in the law.  The statute does not apply, however, to the following:

  • Assets where the disposition is governed by federal law (ERISA) or where the beneficiary designation is governed by another state’s laws or a state-administered retirement plan
  • Assets having an irrevocable beneficiary designation
  • Assets having a beneficiary designation in favor of the former spouse which was signed after the dissolution or annulment
  • Where the court order dissolving or invalidating the marriage requires the decedent to acquire or maintain an asset for the benefit of the former spouse, or prohibits the decedent from unilaterally modifying the beneficiary designation
  • Where the decedent remarries the former spouse and they remain married until the decedent’s death
  • Assets owned jointly by the decedent and the decedent’s former spouse with rights of survivorship

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