While creating an estate plan is a monumental step, it is not always the end of the preparation process. Updates are often necessary and could make a big difference in how your estate gets settled following your passing.
Here are some examples of when and why you should make adjustments.
1. You relocate to a new state
Probate laws vary by state, as do laws involving community property and taxes. It is also a good idea to reconsider any executors or powers of attorney you have named if they live far away from your new residence.
2. Your family dynamics change
Any time a change occurs in your family you should update your will or estate plan. A birth, adoption, marriage, death, divorce or separation could present the need for updates.
3. You acquire a new asset
If you buy a new house or land, start a new business, purchase a car or inherit any new belongings you may want to consider including those in your plan. Likewise, if you sell or get rid of any assets you may also want to make the appropriate changes.
4. More than five years have passed
It is a good idea to revisit your will or estate plan every three to five years. Even if nothing major has changed in your life, you may realize that your mind has changed and you have different priorities.
Making an estate plan may not be enough to ensure your wishes get carried out appropriately, so do not forget to review this important document.