At the end of the most recent legislative session, a new bill was passed adopting a new system for powers of attorney. The new law goes into effect July 1, 2017. There are two major implications to the change.
There are two issues surrounding where a case will be filed - jurisdiction and venue. There is a course in law school dedicated almost entirely to these issues (civil procedure), so unfortunately I can't give a comprehensive answer to the question that suits every situation. The general rule is that cases must be filed in the state and county where the person you're filing against lives, but divorce and family law have more exceptions to that rule than probably any other area of law.
While attorneys do our best to draft wills that are durable, and will reflect your wishes in a variety of scenarios (related to who may or may not survive you, who will serve as executor, etc.), your will may need to be updated when 1) your wishes change, 2) your situation changes, or 3) the law changes.
Often a house may be in only one person's name instead of both. If so, know that how the house is titled is not controlling in a divorce. Regardless of how the house is titled, it will be handled the same way in the divorce, and just like everything else - as a division of marital property.
This is where you have to take a step back and assess your goals. You can hold out for the best financial terms possible, or you can reach an agreement sooner than later, but it's not usually possible to do both.
If you have a case where you and your ex can't agree on all of the issues presented, you'll have to go to court. If you're able to agree on all the issues, you most likely won't.
Going to court - especially for the first time - can be an intimidating thought. But really, it's probably not what you're thinking.
Living wills have been around for a long time, but most people were very careless about creating or maintaining these essential documents. That changed in 2005 due to the highly publicized Terry Schiavo case. Since that time, many people have created living wills - often through forms they've been given by friends, their church, or that they've found online. If you have a living will made through any of these forms, and something happens to you, the hospital caring for you (and if necessary, the courts) WILL try to honor the wishes expressed in those documents.
But you shouldn't have a living will at all.
One issue that comes up frequently regarding custody issues from unwed parents - whether a father asking what his rights are, or a mother asking about her responsibilities to the father - is that, though the father hasn't legitimated the child, "his name is on the birth certificate." People often - mistakenly - believe that this means the father is the father for all purposes in the eyes of the law.
I understand this confusion - you've got one of the most official documents in a person's life, issued by the state, naming the father of the child. It seems like this would be the state's recognition that the father is in fact the father. But it's not.