As you know, an estate plan is crafted in anticipation of your passing. One of its primary goals is the management of your assets, which may be donated or distributed amongst heirs. Within your estate plan, in addition to naming beneficiaries and detailing funeral arrangements, you’ll want to make a designation of an executor of your estate and a power of attorney. All of these considerations will make it easier for your family and loved ones to process and settle your estate.
Many people make an estate plan and forget about it and others make an estate plan and never consider making alterations. However, it’s generally a good consideration to reach out for legal help to update an estate plan regularly – even if there haven’t been many changes to your estate. There are even a few reasons someone may want to update their estate plan immediately.
1. Marriage or divorce
Many changes occur in a person’s life after marriage. Many people prepare for married life by updating their estate plans to include their spouse. If you’re getting married, you may want your spouse to inherit a large sum of your existing estate, or you may want to ensure that newly shared assets aren’t separated from your spouse.
Conversely, you may need to make changes to your estate plan to exclude your spouse if you’re going through a divorce. Whatever happened in your marriage may have caused you to reconsider what your ex should inherit.
Whether you’re having a child or you’re having a grandbaby, you may need to update your estate plan after childbirth. You may want to create a trust specifically for the child to ensure that they have a college fund. Or, if you’re having a child, you may want to name a guardian in your will in the unlikely event of your sudden passing.
3. Family death
One big reason many people update their estate plans is that there was a death in their family. The deceased family member may have been named as an heir in the testator’s estate plan and won’t be eligible to inherit anything.
In most cases, people need to update their estate plans because it’s been several years since there have been any changes. If you’re looking to alter your last wishes, then you may need to reach out for legal help.