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Knowing When to Change Your Will

Despite the best laid plans, change happens. Details like estate plans may be overlooked or lost in the need to tend to financial or personal crises. What type of circumstances call for adjustment of your estate planning documents?

  • Substantial change in wealth: If you experience either significant financial success or a decline in financial fortune, it is essential to revisit your estate plan. An estate plan is designed to protect and direct wealth. A significant influx of money calls for different strategies than those designed to conserve wealth if you weather poor financial circumstances. In either case, a swing in fortune is a reason to take a look at your estate planning tools.
  • Business changes: A change in business status or structure could impact your estate plan.
  • Family changes: Relocation, marriage, divorce or a death in the family impacts your will and estate planning documents. Adding a child, step-child or grand-child to your family is also a significant change that you might want to reflect in your will.
  • Age or poor health: For many, the march of time or ill health provides a needed prompt to revisit or investigate estate plans. Despite the difficulty of planning for your demise, doing so provides comfort and benefit to your beneficiaries when the time arrives.

Even without significant external changes, over time your own personal wishes may change, requiring revision to your will or trust documents. In any case, a careful review of your estate plan, probate and estate planning law should be undertaken every five years.

If you are concerned about tax consequences, your will or estate plan, seek experienced experienced legal advice.

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