Life events that require an estate plan review

On Behalf of | May 13, 2024 | Estate Planning

We go through several phases during our lifetime. And there are several that have a significant impact.

These essential life events should be the catalyst to review and update your estate plan.

1. Marriage and remarriage

You may want to update your plan to include your spouse as a beneficiary on your will, retirement accounts and life insurance policies. Similarly, remarriage requires careful consideration, especially if there are children from previous relationships, to ensure assets are distributed according to your wishes.

2. Divorce

A divorce is a significant life event that dramatically alters your financial and personal landscape. It is essential to remove your former spouse from your estate plan, including revoking powers of attorney and changing beneficiaries on life insurance policies and retirement accounts. You may also need to reevaluate the guardianship of any minor children.

3. Birth or adoption of a child

When a new family member arrives, you want to protect them. It’s crucial to appoint guardians for your minor children in case something happens to you. You will also need to create a trust to protect your assets and pass them on to your children.

4. Death

Losing a spouse, beneficiary or estate executor necessitates immediate changes to your estate plan. This may involve revising bequests, redistributing assets and considering the appointment of new executors, trustees, or guardians.

5. Significant changes in finances

Acquisitions, the sale of a business or an inheritance can impact your estate distribution plans. Reviewing your estate plan can help you make adjustments for any potential tax implications.

6. Relocation

Moving to a different state or country can substantially affect your estate plan due to the varying laws governing wills, trusts, taxes and healthcare directives. You will want to ensure that your estate plan complies with the law.

Life is dynamic, and your estate plan should be, too. Regular reviews will help ensure that your estate plan truly reflects your wishes, providing peace of mind for you and your loved ones.