Wills are one of the most basic and important estate planning documents. It is used to provide comprehensive instructions to ensure protection of your legacy. Also, Wills can stop your family from fighting over your assets, and provide clear instructions for who should be in charge of estate administration. You want to ensure you create a legally valid Will to provide instructions for the future and make certain you keep your Will updated. In addition, Sinclair Prosser Gasior can help provide other legal tools to help carry out your wishes.
Chances are that once most of us have jumped the procrastination hurdle of finally doing a Will, we tuck it away for safekeeping, and never look at it again. However, it is important to treat your estate documents like you do your car. We need regular maintenance checks to ensure it is in good working order. Between family, careers and other various circumstances, life changes rapidly so it is essential to review your documents. Some of the common situations which may necessitate an update including the following:
- Changes in Family – birth or adoption of children; new grandchildren; marriage, divorce or death of family member; incapacity or illness of family member; special needs or disability developments; changes in circumstances of named guardians for children; and if minor children are now adults;
- Changes in Assets – sale or acquisition of property; debt or creditor matters; fluctuation of asset values; stating a business; changes to beneficiaries of non-probate assets, such as pension, retirement or insurance policies; and
- Changes in Locale – moving to another state; family member or guardians moving.
There may be changes in state or tax laws as well which can affect your planning. Also, it is essential to work with an attorney to correctly update the documents to ensure your changes are enforceable and legally valid.