If you have an estate plan in place, then you are further along than most people. Over half of all Americans have yet to address this issue. If you have a plan, remember that estate planning is a constant process, and your plan should reflect your current wishes.
Generally, an estate plan should be reviewed every year or two. Your plan should also be updated if there are any significant changes in your life. Here are a few things to consider.
Have you moved recently?
If you have recently moved to New York, then updating your estate plan may be something to consider. Estate planning laws vary from state to state, so it’s important that all of the terminology within your documents relates to state-specific laws. Otherwise, your documents could end up being contested on the grounds of legal validity.
Moving to another state could also affect the people you named to carry out the instructions in your estate plan. One appointee worthy of consideration is the executor of your estate. Are they still the right person for the task? Would it be better to choose someone who lives closer to your new home?
Changes in family circumstances
The top priority in your estate plan is most likely to ensure that your loved ones are cared for should something happen to you. This could be your spouse, children, other family members and maybe close friends. If any of your relationships have changed, then your estate plan should reflect this. For instance, if you have divorced and remarried, then you’ll likely want to include your new spouse in your estate plan. The same is true if you have recently had children or there are new grandchildren in your family.
Keeping your estate plan up-to-date is essential. The more legal information you have, the better your decisions will be.