Top Five Reasons to Update or Review Your Current Will

Worksheet for Planning Your EstateThere are numerous reasons why you may need to review or update your current estate plan. While it may seem slightly morbid to stay on top of your estate plan constantly, doing so will ensure that your loved ones are not left with a complicated mess upon your passing. Instead of thinking of the morbidity of the estate plan, consider the benefits – such as leaving your children with caregivers, ensuring that your debts are taken care of, etc. The more positive that you make it – and the more you stay on top of it – the more beneficial your estate plan will be for you and your loved ones.

Planning ahead is always best, which is why a will attorney in Long Island will tell you to review your will annually, or at least bi-annually, to make sure that it is still relevant. But, there are also life changes that may require you to review your estate plan sooner.

When Should I Review or Update My Estate Plan?

Outside of the one to two year rule, there are instances in your life that require you to do an automatic review of your current estate plan. These include:

  1. Changes in family or relationships. Have you recently gotten a divorce? Perhaps you are no longer on good terms with a beneficiary. Any relationship or family changes should warrant a quick look at your estate plan. You may need to move beneficiaries around, or even add in new beneficiaries. Relationships are not just with people, either – they can be with charitable organizations. For example, you have left a large majority of your estate to a local charity, but now you no longer want to contribute to that charity. This will require you to change your beneficiary to a new charity or individual.
  2. Asset changes. If your estate has experienced any asset changes – whether you have acquired new assets or sold old ones, you need to reassess your current estate plan. Assets are protected in an estate plan and if they are no longer relevant, they need to be updated.
  3. You have moved to another state. The laws regarding estates and probate will vary from state-to-state. If you have relocated to a new state, but your will was drafted in your old state, you will need to have it updated to reflect all relevant estate laws of your new state.
  4. Tax law changes. Tax laws do play a role in your estate plan’s efficiency. State and federal tax laws are constantly changing, and you need to review your estate plan any time when you notice a change in these laws. Stay informed on recent updates or make sure that your will attorney is up-to-date on the latest tax laws.
  5. Decrease or increase in value. If the value of your estate has suffered a change, you will want to review your plan and see if there are better options out there. Perhaps you did not have a high enough value to warrant a trust, but now you have added more assets and value, and need to move those assets into a trust. Regardless, any time when you have a significant fluctuation in value (good or bad), you need to have your will reassessed.

Speak with a Will Attorney in Long Island Today

If you have not reviewed your estate plan in a while, now is the time to have it looked over. Contact the Law Office of Andrew M. Lamkin P.C. today to explore your options. He can review your existing estate plan and make sure that it is relevant for today. Contact him now for a free consultation at 516-605-0625 or fill out our online contact form with your legal questions.

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