After the birth of your new child, you probably need to update your estate plan. The update will address one simple issue: your current estate plan does not include your child. It may be out of date in other ways too. To protect your child in case anything happens to you, get started on the changes as soon as possible.
Including Your Child in the Estate Plan
When you start reviewing your estate plan, you may realize that it needs more changes than you thought. For example, you probably want to include your child in your will. You may have a trust benefiting your children that should include your child as a beneficiary. And your powers of attorney and other existing estate planning documents should reflect the fact that you have a child.
To update these documents, you need your lawyer to prepare either addendums or new versions of the documents. You should speak to your lawyer about the necessary changes and make sure you sign the new documents when ready.
In addition, you may need new estate planning documents prepared. Many parents decide to incorporate the following:
- Guardianship designation to specify who should take care of your child if you cannot
- College savings account such as a 529 plan
- Life insurance
- Additional estate planning for themselves, such as medical directives
Protecting Your Child Through Estate Planning
Even if you do not update your estate plan, the law may protect your child from being disinherited altogether. But don’t take that risk. It is usually straightforward to add your child to important documents such as your will. Doing so can provide peace of mind that your child will have financial stability even if you are not around.
Signing new documents such as a guardianship designation provides additional peace of mind. You will want someone in place to care for your child if you cannot. And you need a plan in place to protect your child, just in case. Updating your estate plan is a great place to start.
Want to update your estate plan? Local attorney Andrew Szocka, Esq. provides thorough and speedy estate planning help in the Chicagoland area. To schedule a free initial consultation, visit the Law Office of Andrew Szocka, P.C. online or call the office at (815) 455-8430.