5 Reasons to Update Your Will

5 Reasons to Update Your Will

Many of us draft a will, put it away for safekeeping, and never look at it again. This may be a big mistake. Our lives are continuously changing. Loved ones come and go, and our assets and finances change. It is crucial to update your will during many occurrences throughout life. What are the reasons to update your will? Here are 5 life changes that should prompt a review and update of your will.

1) You Got Divorced or Had a Relationship Change

Family dynamics and romantic relationships can change considerably over the years. As life goes on, you may have gotten divorced and want to remove your former spouse from your will. Or perhaps you have remarried and want to include new people who have come into your life.

Although double-checking your estate planning documents probably isn’t at the forefront of your mind in these scenarios, it is recommended that you review your will following significant changes in your family and personal life.

2) Your Family Dynamic Has Changed

Similar to our last point, family dynamics may change throughout your lifetime, even if you do not always anticipate it. Family members may pass unexpectedly, new important people may come into your life. Therefore, it is important to review your family situation regularly and determine if there is anyone you may want to remove from or add to your will.

3) You Sold Your Home or Moved Out of State

If you have sold your home or other large assets, you will want to update your will to reflect this. Are any of your beneficiaries left without an inheritance? Do you wish to allocate something else in its place?

Additionally, if you have moved out of the state where you originally drafted your will, you should consult an estate attorney in your new location to determine if your will is accurate and valid according to the state laws and regulations. It is crucial to understand how the new state handles probate, property, and estate inheritance taxes. This also applies if you acquire an out-of-state asset.

4) You’ve Downsized Your Possessions and Want to Redistribute Items

Perhaps you have decided to downsize your collection of possessions and assets. In this case, you will want to re-evaluate your will. Some beneficiaries may have had their inheritance removed and you may want to supplement something in its place. Updating your will ensures that your remaining items are adequately distributed to all beneficiaries.

5) Your Assets Have Increased or Decreased in Value Substantially

Additional reasons to update your will are when, or if, your assets have increased or decreased in value since your last update or the creation of the will. Your will may lay out exactly how much money you’d like to pass on to each of your beneficiaries. But the size of your estate may fluctuate. If your assets have increased or decreased in value substantially, you will want to update your will to reflect an accurate net worth of your estate. This will prevent complications after you pass.

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Have questions or need advice regarding these reasons to update your will? The Innovative CPA Group can guide you in the right direction.

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