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It might be time to review your estate plan

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2024 | Estate Planning

When you plan your estate, you are taking the crucial step of securing the distribution of your assets when you pass away. It involves a set of legal documents, such as a will and trusts, that outlines your wishes and ensures care for your loved ones. However, preparing your estate plan is not a one-time task you can simply check off your list.

Imagine your estate plan as a family photo. Just as you update your family portraits to capture new additions, milestones and changes, your estate plan also needs regular updates to reflect your current situation. But when exactly should you consider making these updates?

Events that trigger estate plan updates

Life is full of changes, and some events may require you to make crucial revisions to your estate plan. They include:

  • Major life events: Significant events like marriage, divorce, the arrival of a new child, or a loved one‘s passing can dramatically shift your family dynamics. These changes can impact who you want to inherit your assets, as well as who you trust to make important decisions on your behalf.
  • Changes in your financial situation: Substantial changes in your financial circumstances can also trigger the need for an estate plan update. These may include receiving a large inheritance, buying or selling a business or experiencing a considerable increase or decrease in income.
  • New laws and regulations: Tax laws and estate planning regulations can change over time, potentially affecting the effectiveness of your current plan. Staying informed about such changes and updating your plan accordingly can help you take advantage of new opportunities or avoid pitfalls.

By keeping your plan current after any of these events, you can ensure it continues to accurately reflect your desires and protect your loved ones when they need it most. It would also help to review your estate plans regularly – ideally every three to five years. 

Your estate plan is more than just a set of legal documents – it reflects your life, wishes and care for your loved ones. By being attentive to major events that may affect your plan, you can ensure that it continues to serve its purpose effectively.