One of the most common mistakes people make is failing to update their will and estate plan. Creating an estate plan isn’t a one-time task; it needs to be reviewed and revised from time to time. Our Metro West Boston estate planning attorneys explain when you should be making updates to your estate plan.
Top Reasons to Update Your Estate Plan
A good rule of thumb is to update your estate plan if it is three or more years old. Your estate plan should also be updated if there is a change in the tax law or other laws that will affect your estate. However, an estate plan should also be reviewed when specific events occur in your life. Below we have put together a list of events that will require you to update your estate plan.
- You moved to another state: One of the life events that require you to update your estate plan is moving to another state since estate planning laws aren’t national. State laws vary in many ways, so it’s likely that you will have to update many of your estate plan documents to make them valid. If you’ve purchased a property in another state, you might also need to update your estate plan, since you will need to ensure that your power of attorney and advance medical directives are valid in the new state.
- You have a new family member: If there is an addition to your family, such as a new child or grandchild, you will need to update your estate plan. You might want to revise your documents so that the new family members are named and included in the estate plan. You might also want to update it if you’ve been divorced, remarried, or become widowed since the will was last written.
- There has been a change in your assets or liabilities: If there has been a significant change (whether an increase or decrease) in your assets or liabilities, you should review your estate plan. You will need to review how the property will be divided and decide if that still is what you want with your new asset or liability situation.