thanks for your reply. are life insurance and retirement considered community property?
Both great questions for an estate planner near you. Community property principles are a feature of state law. Retirement plans are often governed by federal law rather than the laws specific to any state. As a result, many retirement plans require that a spouse be designated as a beneficiary, or authorize the designation of another beneficiary. Other assets, even including life insurance policies, can trace their community or separate property character to how they were first purchased. Your questions are dead-on, and it sounds like you'd do well to spend a little time with a planner that has your best interests at heart.