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Where Tradition Meets the Future®

The 2024 Guide to Updating Your Estate Plan

My StoryBy: Anthony Cetrangelo, Jr., Esq.

In the hustle and bustle of our day-to-day lives, it’s easy to overlook your estate plan. However, our estate plans (or lack thereof) are not merely legal documents that remind us of our mortality but instead a strategic blueprint that ensures your wishes are fulfilled and legacy upheld. This post delves into why giving thoughtful attention and revisiting your estate plan regularly are crucial for effective asset management and legacy planning.

Why Update Your Estate Plan?

Imagine your estate plan as a well-crafted novel, detailing the story of your assets and how they should be handled. As life unfolds, the characters change, and new plot twists emerge. Regular updates ensure that your novel remains true to your current life narrative and avoids cliffhangers.

Significant events in your life such as marriages, births, or divorces, typically will prompt a client to update their estate plan in some way. It doesn’t just have to be your marriage, it could be the marriage of your son or daughter. For example, maybe the new son-in-law, has you thinking twice before leaving an inheritance outright to your daughter.

How to Begin the Revision Process

Think of this step as dusting off the novel from your bookshelf. Gather your legal documents – wills, trusts, and durable powers of attorney, medical directives – and give them a “once-over” and then meet with your attorney if you have any concerns or changes that your wish to see implemented.

Sometimes changes to the estate plan are not necessary but it is still good to have your attorney summarize the terms, go over any updates in the law and ensure that any newly acquired assets will not go through probate court unintentionally.

Wrapping Up Your Legal Tale

Make it a tradition to revisit your estate plan each year to ensure it remains a true reflection of your desires, telling the story you want it to tell – one of foresight, security, and lasting impact.

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