A turkey is essential as a delicious sleep inducing holiday dish, but when it comes to your estate plan, you want to keep the gobble-gobble to a minimum. There are a variety of life events that can turn your estate plan into a turkey. This is why it is incredibly important to have your estate plan reviewed to ensure that it is still effective and true to your goals. While there is no specific time for when you need to have your estate plan reviewed, every three to five years is generally sufficient. However, if there is any particular life event that takes place that will affect your relationships or distributions, you may want to have your plan reviewed for alterations. Such life events include the following:
Children: Sometimes your Will & Last Testament will provide for after-born children, but you should take the document to your estate-planning attorney to ensure that your little bundle of joy is provided for. Additionally, you may want to set up a trust, a 529-college plan, alter beneficiary designations in your will, and nominate a legal guardian.
Marriage & Divorce: if you have recently married or divorced, you will want to take your current estate plan to your attorney to determine whether these life events are addressed in the documents. Furthermore, you may want to change your Personal Representative, Trustee’s, Guardian’s, etc.
Estate Size Increase: You want to make certain that your estate plans are tailored to your estate size. Therefore, when your estate increases, you may want to make some changes in terms of tax and estate planning. Furthermore, if you have an estate plan that is set up to avoid probate, and acquire new property, you will want to assign that property to your living trust. You also may want to consider a variety of estate planning strategies, anywhere from setting up an LLC to protect certain assets from lawsuits, to reducing the size of your estate for tax purposes.
If you have experienced any similar changes or time lapses since creating an estate plan, keep your turkey in its rightful place as an entree, and out of your estate plan — have it reviewed today! It’s a Wild world. Are you still protected?