An estate plan is a great thing to have in place, but you do need to remember to make updates occasionally. Life changes and you don’t want to have an estate plan that is 20 years out of date.
It is possible to simply make these updates on a set schedule. Maybe you want to go over the plan once a year or every two years. Certain life events mean it’s time to change your plan so that it now fits what your family will need.
Life events that often warrant estate plan changes
Below are certainly not all of the events that should trigger an update, so you need to pay careful attention to your own plan and how it’s going to impact your family. However, these can give you a good place to start.
- You get married or remarried.
- You get divorced.
- You have a child.
- You have a grandchild.
- Someone important passes away.
- You have a health scare.
- You see a significant financial windfall.
- You acquire an inheritance from your own parents .
- You adopt a child
The specific updates you need to make depend on what your goals are. For instance, if you have a new child as a young parent, you may want to choose a guardian for that child. If you get an inheritance from your parents, you may want to set the money aside to leave to your own children.
Every situation is unique. The important thing is simply to remember that you do need to make updates and then to consider all of the necessary legal steps to put those into writing.