When to Update Your Will & Estate Plan

Your will is an ongoing process that needs reviewed periodically to ensure its validity and relevance. This is particularly true when changes occur in your family or personal situation. Your will and estate plan should be revised in response to life-altering events, such as:

Changes in Employment

Income changes may alter or invalidate portions of your will. Therefore, changes should be made in your will to reflect your change in circumstances. In addition, employment changes often entail an interstate move that subjects your estate to a new set of laws. Your will may require revision to comply with these different state laws.

Changes in Assets

Changes in your income, investing, saving, or spending may result in a change in assets. Whether you want to modify asset distribution or beneficiaries, your will needs updated to reflect changes in your assets.

Changes in Texas Probate or Tax Laws

An estate plan should be drafted alongside a Texas attorney to ensure your wishes will be carried out and you maximum tax benefits. Your estate planning attorney is also an expert on laws relating to estate taxation, asset distribution, and provisions for minor children. Hence, they are the best individual to consult when laws are changed or legislation is passed that will affect your will. Otherwise, your family may no longer be fully protected nor your wishes properly executed.

Changes in Marital Status

Whether you are newly married or divorced, your will needs updated. Both relationship changes may spark revisions to adjust assets, their distribution, or beneficiaries. The same is true for your life insurance policies, pensions, and retirement accounts. Estate planning becomes especially complicated with multiple marriages and divorces. Your Texas estate planning attorney will help you provide and protect for your family as you desire. Remember, changes in marital status of beneficiaries should also be reflected by revising your will.

Births & Deaths

Both parents and grandparents should modify their wills upon the birth of a new child or grandchild. A parent’s will needs to be amended to include designated a guardian if anything should happen. Moreover, you may want to include the family’s new addition in the distribution of your assets. Any changes, such as death or incapacitation, to appointed guardians or beneficiaries should reflect in your will’s revision.

Author Jim Cramp is the founder and principal attorney at the Cramp Law Firm.  The Cramp Law Firm provides a spectrum of family-related legal services in the greater San Antonio Region.