When to Update Your Estate Plan

If you are working on your estate plan, you may not realize that you need to update it regularly. Many different events in your life can trigger the need to make changes to the plan. Here is how to recognize when you should go back to your estate planning lawyer.

  1. Birth, Life, and Death Spur Estate Plan Changes

When your family changes, you may need to make estate plan changes too. For example, the birth of a new child is a great reason to revisit the plan. You probably want to include the child in the will or trust. You also may want to make a guardian designation for the child. Parents often start saving for their child’s benefit early on, whether for college or other expenses. You can add to your estate and financial planning with trusts, 529 plans, and other devices soon after your child’s birth.

Further, medical emergencies or deaths in the family often necessitate estate plan changes. You may have named a deceased relative in your will or trust, or as beneficiary of a retirement account. Or you may have appointed a very ill relative as trustee or future guardian. Making the changes to the plan now can save you from unexpected issues later on.

  1. Changes in Financial Situation May Require Estate Plan Updates

In addition, changes in your financial situation may require you to update your estate plan. Receiving a sudden inheritance, losing a lot of money, or getting a big pay raise are all events that could affect the plan. You might need to create a trust or learn how to invest your windfall. Alternatively, you might need to plan for creditor protection due to outstanding debts.

  1. Moving or Travelling May Trigger the Need for Estate Plan Changes

Moreover, a big move or leaving on a long trip could signal the need for estate plan changes. You might make an interstate move or decide to leave the country. That could lead to concern for those you are leaving behind, whether permanently or temporarily. Estate planning offers the ability to sign a power of attorney granting someone else the ability to take care of your affairs, in case of issues while travelling. Further, you can create a will or wills that take into account your move and your new location.

Want to start planning your estate? 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.

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