I was speaking with a client this morning from Franklin, Tennessee, and they asked me, "when is it an appropriate time to update or review our wills and trusts?"
This is a very common question of many of my clients, as well as a very difficult question to answer as an attorney. Simply, the answer is different for everyone. As a general rule, you should have your estate plan reviewed once every three years. In my experience, family circumstances and laws usually change during this period of time that usually warrant a review, and maybe an update.
However, there is also a list of changes that could warrant a review and update sooner than three years:
- Birth of a child, or birth of grandchildren
- Death of your spouse
- Remarriage or planning to remarry
- Increase in wealth
- Sale of a business
- Children getting married
- Children getting divorced
- Child or Children receiving government benefits for special needs
- Child or Children in financial trouble, filing for bankruptcy, or defendant in a lawsuit
- Reaching the age of 60 or older, or thinking about how to pay for possible long term nursing home care
- Preparing to sell appreciating assets (real estate, stocks, bonds, CDs, etc.)
- Spouse suffers and illness and/or disability
There are a number of reasons why it may be time to update your estate plan. This is really different for each family and their unique personal, family, and financial circumstances.
If you have questions about estate planning and whether it might be time to update your existing estate plan, please contact our office for an initial consultation to discuss your estate planning needs.
However, if you are just now starting to think about estate planning for the first time, a good place to start would be to attend one of our live educational seminars and download one of our many free legal reports. You can download these for free or register for an educational seminar for free right here on our website.
If you have any questions, please call, we are always here to help!
Daniel A. Perry