Wise to Revise: Benefits of Revising Your Will Package
Trainor Law PLLC
There are numerous reasons why executing a will package serves your best interests (read more about these benefits in our blog If There’s a Will, There’s a Way. However, what happens when years pass by and circumstances change? In this blog, we examine the benefits of updating your existing will package.
Your Life Circumstances Change
Relationships. Our life progression is rarely static, so it makes sense that our relationships wouldn’t be, either. Rather, our relationships are dynamic and change throughout the course of our lives. Perhaps, since you last executed your will package, you entered into a new marriage or left an existing one. Maybe a new child or grandchild or pet was since added to the family. Maybe one of your loved ones has since passed away. Perhaps your children have since reached adulthood. Whatever the scenario may be, these changes will likely change your estate plans in some way. You may want to add a new family member as a beneficiary to receive a portion of your estate or remove a deceased family member. You may want to appoint a new or different family member as executor or another designation. Perhaps you want to appoint Guardians for new children or pets. You might also want to instate a trust for your children. All the above scenarios and more can be accounted for accordingly by revising your existing will package.
Location. A new home, job, or calling may have changed your state of residence. If you have since moved to another state, you may consider revising your will package to ensure compliance with the rules and regulations of your new home state as state laws vary in multiple ways. You also have an opportunity to update personal addresses as well as primary care provider information that may have also changed.
Assets. If your personal assets have changed since your last will execution, you might seek to revise your will package. Whether your assets increase or decrease, changes may influence how (and to whom) you allocate said assets. Additionally, perhaps you have since started your business or hold shares in a business and seek to outline who will receive said shares should you pass away. Maybe you want to add a simple trust provision within your will or an extensive trust (revocable or irrevocable). An estate planning attorney can help you navigate these changes and potential additions to your existing estate documents.
Your Appointees’ Life Circumstances Change
Just as your life circumstances change, those of your appointees and beneficiaries may change, as well. If a loved one has moved farther away, you may seek to change a Guardian designation to someone closer in proximity to your family. If an appointee has since passed away, you can appoint someone new to serve within the role. If your relationship with someone strengthens or weakens since you executed your will package, you may also want to appoint them or remove them, respectively, from a certain position.
Tax Laws Have Changed
As mentioned above, you may consider revising your existing will package should you move to another state to ensure compliance with the rules and regulations of your new home state as state laws vary in multiple ways. Additionally, even if you reside in the same state, changes in existing tax laws (whether they be state or federal) may affect your estate in some way. Therefore, consulting with an estate attorney to ensure your documents are updated in accordance with tax law updates will further serve your best interests personally and financially.
Three to Five Years Have Passed
Even if none of the above scenarios of changes relate to your personal life circumstances, reviewing and, if necessary, revising your existing will package every three to five years is a sensible action to take. You may consult with your attorney, who will advise you on what changes may be made to further benefit your intentions and your best interests.
If you or someone you know is interested in revising a will package, please contact our Malta, NY office at (518)-899-9200 or through our website at this link.
Disclaimer: This article is intended to be educational and is not intended to be legal advice, which can only be given after an attorney-client relationship is established.