As you create a will, you’ll slowly begin to realize just how many benefits it’s bringing to your life. From the peace of mind to the ability to outline what happens to your assets upon your death, you can make a lot of headway with your estate plan by taking this one step.
However, don’t fall into the trap of believing that you only have to focus your attention on your will one time during your life. Yes, it’s important to create this legal document at the right time, but there will be instances when you have to update it.
Here are some signs that it’s time to update your will:
- The passage of time: As the months turn to years, keep your attention on your estate plan and will in particular. A quick review will help you better understand if now’s the time for a change.
- Divorce or marriage: When you end your marriage or tie the knot, it will affect your will in a number of ways. Review it and make changes accordingly. For example, if your ex-spouse is still listed as your beneficiary, it’s likely that you want to change this.
- The birth of a child: If you bring a child into your family, either through birth or adoption, it’s likely to affect your will and estate plan as a whole. For example, you need to name a guardian for your child.
- A major financial change: Should your financial circumstances change, such as the result of an inheritance, it should reflect in your will. You must make sure that all your assets are accounted for based on your wishes.
- The death of a loved one: For instance, if a beneficiary or executor passes on, you need to update your will accordingly.
You’re not required by law to update your will, but neglecting to do so can result in serious complications for you and/or your family down the line.
Get into the habit of regularly reviewing and updating your will and the rest of your estate plan. And of course, should you face a major change of life circumstances, take immediate action.