When you create an estate plan, you do so with the idea that it will remain in place until your death. While this is true to a certain degree, remember this: Your plan may require some changes over the years.
Get into the habit of reviewing your estate plan at least once per year. This allows you to pinpoint any problems and make changes in a timely manner.
Also, keep an eye out for any major life events that call for an update to your estate plan. These include, but are not limited to, the following:
- A person you name in your estate plan is no longer living or is incapacitated
- You went through a divorce
- You got married
- You want to name a new person in your estate plan, such as a child
- There are new state or federal laws impacting your estate plan
- You need to change your guardian or executor, such as if your original choice has passed on
- Your children have reached the age of 18
- The size of your estate plan has substantially increased or decreased
- You have reached retirement age
It may not be your idea of fun, but reviewing and updating your estate plan is an important task. If you neglect to do this when necessary, it could impact your loved ones at some point in the future.
Once you get into the habit of reviewing your estate plan, it will become second nature. As you make the necessary changes, you'll gain peace of mind in knowing that everything is exactly how it should be.