Planning an estate involves preparing for one’s passing and ensuring that their possessions are transferred in accordance with the testator’s wishes. Estate planning is a continuous process and that may mean it needs modifications.
A person may need to change their estate plans for a few different reasons. Here’s what you should know:
You had a child
You may have had a child or a grandchild. Making sure a child’s future is prepared for success may be a good reason to update an estate plan. For example, the testator can establish a trust to support their child or grandchild. The trust could be used to help the child through college, fund a business or pay for marriage.
Or, if the testator and the child’s other parent are both killed in an accident, an estate plan could name a child guardian. This way the child’s needs and wants are still taken care of by someone who has most of the same legal rights as the child’s parents.
Estate plans are frequently modified to incorporate a married spouse. Testators are allowed to identify their partners as heirs, powers of attorney, executors and guardians for their children.
In this approach, testators are certain that someone they know and trust has the authority to handle these crucial issues.
It’s been several years
Estate plans may need to be revised periodically. Some people revise their plans once a year to reflect significant investments. But, it’s often believed that every two to three years should be plenty for people to update their plans.
Making sure your estate plans reflect your wishes is crucial. You may need to reach out for help to ensure you understand your legal options when altering an estate plan.