It Might be Time to Update That Estate Plan
June 29, 2014
The story plays out the same way almost every time you hear it: Some wealthy individual passes away, and despite the fact that they had an estate plan filled out, their family still gets embroiled in a bitter court battle over how the estate should be split up.
This is because, even though the individual had an estate, they never bothered to update it. Studies have shown that at the time of their passing, most wealthy individuals have not touched their estate plan in over 5 years.
This is not merely a problem of the wealthy, either; it is a normal problem that occurs every single day. In fact, from anecdotal evidence, the average individual is even more likely to let their estate plan go untouched.
It is worth checking up on your estate plan at least once a year, as circumstances of life change rather frequently. Marriages occur or dissolve, children get born or tragically pass, businesses get formed or shut down, new types of investments are made, etc. Any type of unexpected change in an estate plan can cause your loved ones to become bogged down in the legal system, when they should be focused on healing and moving on.
In addition to all of those obvious changes, many times tax laws can change in relation to estates and wills, which is something that the average individual may not even know. Your estate planning attorney will be aware of all of those issues, and can help you make sure you are taking full advantages of the legal and financial options available to you.
The whole point of a will or estate is to have your wishes carried out after you pass away. Keeping your estate plan updated with the help of a qualified attorney will ensure that that is exactly what happens.