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When Should I Update My Will?

Estate attorneys recommend updating your will each time you experience a major life event.

CNBC’s recent article entitled “When it comes to a will or estate plan, don’t just set it and forget it,” says that your will should be updated when your personal circumstances change, which could happen at any time. Some frequent triggers include:

  • Changes in health, including that of executors and guardians
  • Changes in-laws, which may impact tax and legal strategies; and
  • Changes in state residence can also impact planning.

Every state has different laws as to the administration of a will. They will vary regarding the required residence of an executor, inheritance tax laws, and whether a child can be disinherited by omission.

It’s wise to review your will every few years with an estate planning attorney, who likely will say that documents should also be reviewed when these events happen:

  • A substantial change in your financial status
  • A change of parental statuses, like the birth of a child
  • A change of guardians
  • Changes in designations of fiduciaries, such as the executor of the will, successor trustee of a revocable trust, attorney-in-fact, or healthcare agent; and
  • Changes in a family member’s situation, such as if a child develops special needs and will need appropriate planning.

The article says that an overlooked trigger to updating your will is consolidation in the banking industry. If you named a bank as the executor of your estate and the bank has been bought or sold recently, you may now have a new executor.

Make certain that you know who that person or institution is – and that you trust its judgment.

It’s also important to revisit your beneficiaries after marriage or divorce.

Reference: CNBC (March 1, 2022) “When it comes to a will or estate plan, don’t just set it and forget it”

Suggested Key Terms: Estate Planning Lawyer, Wills, Probate Court, Inheritance, Asset Protection, Will Changes, Executor, Personal Representative, Probate Attorney, Beneficiary Designations

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800 Village Square Crossing 
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
561-402-7060

Hablamos Español!

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