If you are going through the divorce process in California, you may be uncertain of how your split will affect your insurance needs, eligibility and availability. We will give a brief overview of how the different forms of insurance are affected by divorce.

Health insurance: It is important to notify your insurer of your divorce as soon as it becomes finalized. Continuing to cover your ex-spouse after divorce is technically insurance fraud and, as such, could cause you to be dropped from your insurance plan. The uninsured spouse can continue to be insured through COBRA, but will be required to pay the full cost of the insurance policy.

Home insurance: If your spouse moves out of the family home and takes high-value furniture and other goods when he or she goes, you should be able to reduce your insurance payments. Alternately, if you move out of the home and into an apartment, you should look into renter's insurance to cover those furnishings and other items you took from the home.

Auto insurance: When you and your spouse begin living separately, you will each need individual car insurance plans. Fortunately, this will probably cause your insurance rates and payments to drop.

Life insurance: If you were previously covered under your ex-spouse's life insurance policy, he or she will have to release you from that policy before you can take out your own. After this happens, you should think about whether you want to increase or otherwise change your life insurance coverage, and decide which person to designate as your beneficiary. You should also remove your former spouse from any healthcare directives.

Source: Reuters, "How to untangle your insurance plans in divorce," Geoff Williams, Sept. 11, 2012