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When to Update Your Will

By regularly reviewing your will and ensuring it is properly updated, you lessen the risk of an inheritance dispute occurring over your estate. Here are some events that warrant a possible update of your estate planning documents:

The changing family scene

If new children or grandchildren are born or adopted, or if a child has become an adult after you made your will, you may wish to update your will to reflect these changes.

Marriage or divorce

If your spouse is not mentioned in your will and there is no pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement, they may make a claim against the estate as a “pretermitted spouse.”

If you divorce, all provisions in your will affecting the spouse become void (but you still might wish to prepare a new will to avoid any hassles and/or confusion after you pass away).

Death of someone named in the will

If a beneficiary, personal representative, trustee, etc. dies, and you don’t have alternates listed, you may need to change your will accordingly.

Moving

If you move to a different state or country, your new place of residence may have different laws.

Change in financial circumstances

If the value of your estate increases or decreases significantly, you should review your will. You may no longer own property disposed of in your will, or your will may not deal with newly-acquired property.

Change in law

State and federal legislation, particularly tax laws, changes frequently. It is important to meet with your estate planning attorney at least once every few years to assure that your documents are up-to-date.

The above are just some of the reasons for reviewing your will. You should, in any event, review your will every year — the month and day of your signing is generally a good day to set aside each year to update your list of assets and review your documents to make sure that they still reflect your wishes. An experienced Orlando wills attorney can help you review and update your will as necessary.

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