Hyden, Miron & Foster, PLLC Law Blog

Monday, November 23, 2020

Times to Review Your Estate Plan

Do you have an estate plan in place? If so, congratulations! You have taken an important step towards protecting the future you want for yourself and your loved ones. Remember, however, that estate planning is really just the beginning of what should be an ongoing process. Life brings significant changes and ones that could impact your estate plan. In order to help ensure that your estate plan continues to most effectively encapsulate your wishes and goals, you should revisit on a fairly regular basis.

Times to Review Your Estate Plan

Life changes and law changes can have a substantial impact on estate plans. That is why you should schedule times to review your estate plan. It does not have to be every month, but maybe you should consider making it an annual appointment.

In addition to these scheduled estate plan reviews, you should also review your estate plan before or immediately after major life events. This means, if there is a death in the family, you should review your estate plan. If the deceased plays any role in your estate plan, from being a named beneficiary to being an agent, or even a personal representative, you will want to update your estate plan accordingly. If the deceased individual was listed as a beneficiary on any of your financial accounts, you will also want to update these designations.

An addition to a family can also be a good time to review your estate plan. Has someone given birth or adopted recently? If you want to include this person in your estate, you will want to make changes accordingly.

Marriage and divorce in the family can also be critical times to review and update an estate plan. This is especially true considering so many people have their spouses listed not only as beneficiaries of their estates, but also designate their spouses for positions such as health care surrogate, agent pursuant to a power of attorney, and maybe even personal representative of the estate.

You may also want to consider reviewing your estate plan in light of pending nuptials in the event one of your loved ones is marrying someone who you have some misgivings about. A strong estate plan can protect your loved one’s inheritance in the event your misgivings end up being well-founded.

Relocating is also a good time to review and update an estate plan. While oftentimes a state will recognize the validity of estate planning documents properly executed in a different state, reestablishing some, if not all of them, in the new state can simplify things a great deal. You may also want to reconsider things like personal representative designation as well as health care surrogate designation and power of attorney designation. While it is often allowed to name an out of state individual to fill these roles, for purposes of ease and convenience, having a local person to take on the responsibilities associated with these roles can be much better.

Estate Planning Attorneys

Whether it is establishing an estate plan, reviewing an estate plan, or updating an estate plan, the knowledgeable team at Hyden, Miron & Foster are here to help. Contact us today.

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