You may have created your will years ago, then put it away in a safe place.
However, time has passed. There are many reasons for you to look your will over in the light of day and make any necessary changes.
Research shows that wills created by even the wealthiest individuals are often at least five years old. You may be justifiably proud of yourself for having had difficult conversations with family members that allowed you to create your will. However, that was years ago. Important changes have occurred, which make it necessary to revise this document.
Reasons for revisions
You may find in this list one or two reasons for updating your will:
- Certain beneficiaries named in your will have died
- The executor you named has died or is no longer able to serve
- Your child has reached the age of 18
- There has been an increase or decrease in the value of your estate
- You have acquired or disposed of a major asset
- A change in laws affects your estate plan, including your will
The most common changes
Although there are many reasons for you to update your will, here are three of the most common:
- Your marital status has changed: You now have an ex-spouse who will inherit your estate unless you block that possibility by updating your will
- There are births in the family: New children or grandchildren have been born in the years since you made your will, and you want to include them as beneficiaries
- You have retired: It is important to make changes relating to age and health once you reach retirement
If the time has come for you to reassess the contents of your will, seek legal guidance to help you update this important document.