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When Should You Update Your Estate Plans?

Butler Law July 20, 2018

You and your spouse worked together to come up with a thoughtful estate plan. It covers all your beneficiaries, includes a medical directive and handles distribution of your assets. You believe you and your spouse have planned for every eventuality, when suddenly, live changes. Maybe you were blessed with a new grandchild, or one of your children got married. Whatever the life event, it seems like your carefully arranged estate plans may now need to change.

Fidelity Investments recommends you review estate plans about every three to five years. If, however, there is a major change in you or your family’s lives, you may also want to revisit your plans. Here are some situations that may mean it is time to change to your estate plans.

  • Birth of a child or grandchild

  • Marriage or divorce of a beneficiary

  • Grandchild or child needs money for college

  • Moved out-of-state

  • Bought a new business

  • Your divorce or remarriage

  • Death of a beneficiary or spouse

  • New illness or disability

  • Purchased a new home or other substantial asset

  • Significant change in financial standing

  • Changes in inheritance tax laws

  • Career changes

  • Received large inheritance

  • Need to change executor or trustee

Life is constantly changing, so it makes sense that your estate plans will need to keep up. If you have recently experienced any of these changes, you might want to reach out to an experienced estate planning attorney. A lawyer can advise you how to adapt your plan to fit your new circumstances.