After creating your estate plan, you may think that is the end of your journey. In reality, however, estate plan creation is just the first step.
In the years that follow, you must keep your plan up to date so that it reflects your life circumstances as accurately as possible. After all, what is the point of having an estate plan that does not actually reflect the assets you have or the beneficiaries you want involved?
Changes after moving
The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel discusses important reasons to update your estate plan. First and foremost, you should always update your plan any time major life changes occur that affect your assets, your beneficiaries, or your estate plan as a whole.
For example, most states have different laws regarding estate plan legalities. If you move to another state after creating your plan, you will want to do a review of local law to ensure that your plan still fits the requirements.
Beneficiaries and assets
You also want to update your plan for major changes to beneficiaries, i.e. the people in your life who will gain assets from your estate. This can include marriages, divorces, the birth or adoption of children, estrangement from relatives and more.
Asset-wise, this just includes any major changes to your assets such as falling into debt or coming into a big inheritance. It includes shifting assets too, such as selling or buying property.
Finally, you should review your estate plan for potential updates once every three to five years just to ensure that everything is as you want it.