If you already have an estate plan, congratulations! That is an important step that many people procrastinate for decades. However, even though this achievement is complete, remember you need to check up on it every now and then.
Your life changes a lot over the years. You want your estate plan to reflect your shifting circumstances. It is crucial to consider whether you need to adjust your estate plan. Here are some signs you need to review it.
1. You are getting a divorce
If you and your spouse are parting ways, make sure your estate planning documents reflect this. After all, do you really want your former spouse to receive your assets when you die? What about him or her making important medical decisions for you as your health care proxy? You probably want to take your ex-spouse out of the will or remove him or her as a beneficiary on your retirement account.
2. Your wedding is coming up
If you are entering another marriage, you have some unique estate planning considerations to keep in mind. How will you deal with any new stepchildren? Can you help your spouse save on taxes when dealing with your estate? If you are saying "I do" again, make sure you sit down with an estate planning lawyer to make proper adjustments.
3. There is a new child or grandchild
If a new family member is entering the picture through birth or adoption, it means certain parts of your estate plan may need some tinkering. Do you need to create a trust or set up a college fund? Who will be the guardian for the child in case the parents are unable to do so?
Any time your life significantly changes, you should take another look at your estate plan at the very least. These are just three of the many situations that warrant estate plan updates.