If you have an estate plan, good for you! Too many people never draw up one. That leaves their families with unnecessary time, money and conflict spent on determining what to do with their assets after they’re gone.
However, an estate plan is rarely a “one and done” situation — particularly if you develop one when you’re young(ish) and healthy. There are many life changes that require a modification of your plan.
If you have a child, by birth or adoption, you’ll want to designate whom you want to be that child’s legal guardian should both parents pass away. You will likely also want to include your child in your will and appoint a person to manage the child’s inheritance should you not be around to do so.
If you divorce, you’ll likely want to remove your former spouse as a power of attorney for financial and heath care matters as well as remove him or her as a beneficiary of your estate.
If you remarry, you’ll probably want to add your new spouse as your primary beneficiary and perhaps POA, while continuing to leave money to your children from your previous marriage.
If one of your POAs or executors passes away, you’ll want to choose another person for this responsibility. Generally, when you draft your estate plan, your attorney will advise you to name secondary people for these responsibilities. However, if you haven’t done that, it’s essential to designate someone who is able and willing to take on the responsibility.
These are just a few of the life changes that warrant taking a look at your estate plan and making some changes. They’re generally rather easy to make if you have a solid plan in place.
If you have any questions, it’s best to contact your estate planning attorney to determine what steps you need to take. They’re generally rather easy to make if you have a solid plan in place.
Source: Forbes, “6 Reasons To Revise Your Estate Plan As Soon As Possible,” Mark Eghrari, Jan. 02, 2017