Change is one of the few things we can rely on. Because parts of our lives will inevitably change at some point, we need to make sure our estate planning documents reflect these developments. If situations change course and our estate plans don't keep pace, we run the risk of leaving important people out of the legacies we ultimately leave.
Below is a rundown of several major life events that call for an estate plan update:
- Change in Assets: Whether you have more assets or fewer, your estate planning documents should note these changes. You want accurate figures when dealing with any legal paperwork as even the slightest change or error could create issues for your heirs.
- Change in Status of a Guardian, Trustee, or Executor: If an individual you have named to be guardian, trustee, or executor in your estate plans is no longer available to handle the responsibility, your plans should be changed accordingly.
- Changes in Tax Laws: It seems like tax laws and codes are constantly in flux. Keep up to date on any laws that could affect your estate plans so you can leave your legacy with a minimum of tax burden for your heirs.
- Children: Whether by birth, adoption, or marriage, it's always joyous to add a new member to the family; just make certain they are accounted for in your estate plans. You want them to have the same protections you are leaving the rest of your family.
- Death of a Spouse: The recently widowed are understandably going through a trying time. At some point, a widow or widower will need to revisit their estate plans and update them with the major life change they've gone through.
- Divorce: If you have recently gone through a divorce, your estate plans should be amended as needed. You will likely need to rethink who your heirs will be and how your assets will be divided.
- Marriage: If you've recently tied the knot, you want to ensure your spouse is an integral part of your estate plans. Have a serious talk with your partner about how you want to reshape your wills, trusts, and other documents now that you are a couple.
- Relocation: A move may not immediately seem like it would warrant a change to one's estate plans. But relocation is nonetheless a major life event in which your circle of friends, owned property, healthcare team, and job may all be different. Your plans might now include new loved ones in your will, new property, changes to your healthcare directives, and different assets.
If you need to design or update your plans, trust Drake Law Firm, PA. Their probate and estate law attorneys represent clients throughout the Mountain Home, Arkansas, region. Call (870) 425-2460, visit their website, or find them on Facebook or Twitter to schedule an appointment today.