Estate Planning, Legacy, Medical Power of Attorney, Power of Attorney, Probate, Trusts, Uncategorized, Wealth, Wills

When Do I Need to Update My Estate Plan?

It’s a new year, and a new you! Or… at least, that’s what I tell myself every single year on this day.

But have you ever told yourself today that you might need a new estate plan?

No, I’m not trying to sell you something, but I am saying that you need to review and may need to update your estate plan!

If you don’t have an estate plan, you should seriously consider one. If you do have an estate plan, please take 30 minutes out of any of the next couple of days and consider the following:
– Did anyone pass away in the family?
– Were there any births or adoptions in the family?
– Were there any divorces or marriages in the family?
– Were there any major fights or reconciliations between family members in the past year?
– Did we discover any serious medical or financial problems in the family?
– Did anyone start or close a business in the family?
– Did anyone buy or sell real estate or other major assets in the past year?

If any of these questions end with a yes, you should seriously consider reviewing how those changes might affect your estate plan.

Specifically, you should ask yourself the following:
– Who is in charge of your estate after you pass? Are you still okay with that person or those people being in charge?
– Who is going to receive your assets after you pass? Do you need to add or subtract anyone?
– What conditions did you put on whomever is receiving your assets after you pass? Would you change any kind of conditions you would put on those distributions due to the past year’s changes?

And lastly, and I cannot emphasize this enough, please check your beneficiary designations on all assets that have beneficiary designations. This includes bank accounts, 401(k)s, IRAs, and investment accounts. Failure to review beneficiary designations is a serious problem, and millions can be lost in taxes, incorrect distributions, and other legal/financial problems if you do not do so.

Last, but not least, if you have any questions about taxes, financial planning, insurance, or other financial topics that may be affecting your lives at the moment, feel free to reach out to me. I know plenty of people in my network who can assist you on these issues.

For those of you who are my clients, I am going to reach out to you here in a little while to conduct my free annual review of your estate. It comes with the fee that you paid, and I’d be more than happy to make sure that everything is up to date and ready to go for your estate plan.