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When should you update your estate plans? 2 triggers

On Behalf of | Aug 18, 2023 | Estate Planning

When did you last make your estate plans? It may be so long ago that you can’t even put a date on it. If you can’t remember when you made your estate plan, that may be your first sign that your plans are out of date. 

Estate planning is a life-long process. It’s often believed that estate plans should be altered every couple of years. However, your estate plans may need to be updated earlier. Here’s what you should know:

After you have a child

Many people should consider updating their estate plans after having children. Parents can alter their estate plans to include child guardians. If a parent suffers any fatal medical illnesses or injuries, then the child’s guardian can take custody of the testator’s children. The child’s guardian would be responsible for raising them, including providing them with an education, caring for their medical needs and preparing them for adulthood.

Furthermore, parents may wish to set up a trust for their children. A trust can be used to put aside assets that can be used for their children’s future. The grantor can even include instructions for assets in a trust to be distributed for specific reasons, such as higher education. 

After starting a business

Many people start businesses in their lives. People often focus on the now when running a business, but often overlook what happens to their business if they suddenly die. People can create business succession plans in their estate plans. A business succession plan can help decide how the business is handled after the testator’s passing. For example, a business could be split between children after the testator passes away.

There are many other reasons to update an estate plan early, such as marriage, divorce or medical illnesses. It can help to review your legal rights and options when updating your estate plans.