Insurance and divorce. How are those two typically uninviting concepts related? Well, you may be surprised to know that in the challenging world, and what sometimes feels like the downward spiral of divorce, an insurance agent can be a beacon of calm, trusted advice and a person that can offer comfort and protection.

At a time when your therapist, accountant, banker and most of all, your lawyer, are all spending far too much time with you – your insurance agent is the one person that doesn’t get paid by the hour, won’t be a part of the conflict and the right person will have your best interests at heart. A qualified and well-versed agent will do their best to understand your situation and provide solutions.

Why do you need an agent? Well, insurance is all about protecting the things that are most valuable to you – your life, your home, your cars, your cottage, etc. And, it’s likely you and your spouse shared the cost of all the insurance on all your possessions. Now, it is you alone that will be responsible for protecting your assets, and your life.

It’s unlikely that you and your spouse will continue to share the same insurance professional, so be prepared to be in the market for a new one. Here’s how the right agent can help you through what may be the most stressful time of your life:

  • Are you moving out of the matrimonial home? If yes, you may need home, condo or renter’s insurance for your new place. No bank will give you a mortgage without showing evidence of insurance and most landlords will require proof of liability insurance before they even give you a key. So, be prepared, you will need your agent and she will help you get the coverage you need for liability, contents and put you at ease through this difficult time. Also, if you’re keeping your home and staying there with your children, be prepared to possibly foot the bill for the entire premium yourself moving forward; keeping in mind, BOTH spouses typically have insurable interest in the property if it was purchased jointly, so no one’s name should be removed from the policy until all property settlements are arranged. A qualified agent will guide you through this.
  • Do you have one vehicle that is shared? More than one vehicle? Whose names are these vehicles in? Who pays the insurance? You will likely be taking on the expense of your own auto insurance now too. And premiums can be pricey. You may want to refinance, sell and buy a more affordable vehicle; there are options. Where you live can also affect your premiums. All things to consider and rest assured, these are issues your agent can help you with.
  • Will you be paying child support? Spousal support? If there is a court order in place requiring you to maintain a life insurance or critical illness policy to ensure those payments continue in the event of your death or illness, you’ll want to select the right policy for the circumstances. A licensed agent will be able to identify what your needs are and customize the protection for you under the circumstances. Remember, employer life insurance plans are often not enough, because there is no guarantee you will always be employed there – and, life insurance becomes more expensive the older we get. Lastly, for any existing life policies, you may want to change your beneficiary as it is likely your ex. Many individuals forget to do this, resulting in legal battles that no one has an appetite for.

Take note – if you haven’t figured it out already, divorce is stressful. You need the right people in your corner. The ones who will have your back and make a difference for you and your children when you need it most. Get yourself the right insurance professional who is qualified and knowledgeable. They will help you over the bumps in the road and get you to the other side. And, believe me, there is another, brighter side.

Dina Constantinou  

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