There are many reasons why it is important to keep your estate plan up to date. Estate planning goals change over the years for many reasons, including changes in family circumstances – such as the birth, death, or marriage of a family member; changes in your financial situation – such as a new job or the sale or purchase of real estate; or changes in the law.
It is important that your estate planning documents reflect your current life situation and support your long-term goals. Here are four simple things you can do now when planning for 2019 and beyond and to ensure you are in a better position to protect your family.
- Will. If you have children, make sure you have a will that includes a guardianship clause. This is an easy, inexpensive way to create peace of mind for you and your family, and to ensure that you – not the state – decide who would raise your children in the event of your unplanned death.
- Revocable Living Trust. Consider creating a revocable trust to better protect your property and your beneficiaries by providing for a more efficient, less expensive, and less public distribution of your assets.
- Divorce Clause. Review your wills and trusts to make sure you have a divorce clause to protect you in the event of an unforeseen divorce. This may not be comfortable to consider, but you want to make sure that, if you get divorced, your former spouse’s family members can be “kicked out” as beneficiaries, trustees, power holders.
- Beneficiary Designations. Review all your life insurance policies and all your retirement accounts to ensure you have the proper beneficiary designations in place. This is especially important if you have a newer job because the person you designated when you had your first job out of school may not be the person you would designate today.
Make it your resolution to review your estate planning documents to make certain that they are still effective under current law and continue to meet your goals.
If you would like assistance with your estate plan, or need help with any other legal matter, please contact Fournier Legal Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 860.670.3535 now for a free consultation and planning session.