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When should I update my will?

| Dec 28, 2020 | Firm News |

While planning for the future has no demographic, many who do initiate a will are aware of the many ways life can zig and zag and introduce moments of joy and compromise. As such they often turn to estate planning to seek out further security for themselves and their family.

And that security typically takes the form of considering the “what ifs” of life. While those considerations often branch out years or decades into the future, they often stem from whatever circumstance is in play at the moment. And while some think of a will as a finalized event, in reality, it is far more malleable, and many recommend that it sees updates.

When life brings big change, wills can rearrange

First off, there’s no need to hover over the fine print of a will day in and day out. According to an article on Fidelity’s website, wills benefit from a general visitation every several years. However, certain life events can bear an exception. While the article goes into deeper detail on what these life events can entail, it generally revolves around the changing makeup of your family, a new financial situation, new assets, or even new legislative changes that generally impact wills.

If your family has been growing in members, you may need to address the change in dependents. Homeownership can also be a valid addition to a will, as well as any significant assets or gifts you achieve. If you get married or end a marriage, plans for specific assets and who they will go to will likely change.

And because laws often evolve over time, standards for estate planning are prone to change. If aspects of an estate plan are invalid in the face of the law, it can undo a lot of hard work and planning.

Approaching a will can be an intimidating endeavor, but it by no means has to be a finalized product that bears no margin of change. In fact, after a will has been drafted, you may revisit it and tweak and fine-tune it to your liking. That is, provided it falls in line with standards and regulations.

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