Our Florida life insurance lawyers have seen a dramatic increase in life insurance disputes over the past few years involving former spouses making claims after divorce where they are still the named beneficiary under the policy. In 2012, Florida’s life insurance law changed which confused the issues and created uncertainty as to whether the former spouse has a right to the policy benefits even if they are still the named beneficiary.
Florida’s Life Insurance Law Changes
Florida Statute section 732.703 deals with the Effect of divorce, dissolution, or invalidity of marriage on disposition of certain assets at death. The statute says that a designation made by or on behalf of the decedent providing for the payment or transfer at death of an interest in an asset to or for the benefit of the decedent’s former spouse is void as of the time the decedent’s marriage was judicially dissolved or declared invalid by court order prior to the decedent’s death, if the designation was made prior to the dissolution or court order. The decedent’s interest in the asset shall pass as if the decedent’s former spouse predeceased the decedent. Florida’s new divorce and life insurance law says that it applies to all designations made by or on behalf of decedents dying on or after July 1, 2012, regardless of when the designation was made.