What To Look for When Reviewing Your Will

A will is not a one-and-done document. It requires adjusting to your needs over time, especially if the assets or people involved in your initial will no longer apply to your current situation.

It’s good practice to evaluate your estate planning documents at least on an annual basis. Anytime you have a substantial change in your life circumstances is another good reason to look again at all of your estate planning materials, including your will, trust, existing transfer-on-death instruments, and beneficiaries on your life insurance policies and retirement accounts. Here are some simple steps to review your will and make sure it’s still in line with your wishes.

First, look at the person you have named as being in charge of your estate, which is referred to as an executor or personal representative. Make sure that this person is still alive, willing and capable of serving in this role of administering your estate. You also need to consider who you have named as an alternate to any personal representative so that there are plans in place if your primary person is unable or unwilling to serve. The next thing to do when evaluating your established will is to look at all of the provisions regarding distribution. These provisions clearly explain who is eligible to receive what from your estate. You may notice that there are people or specific instructions on there that are no longer in line with a satisfactory outcome.

If you identify that changes must be made in your will, communicating with an estate planning attorney is a valuable first step toward documenting these changes and moving things forward. A dedicated estate planning attorney in Pasadena can make sure that your entire estate plan, not just your will, matches up with what you hope to accomplish in the future, making things easy for your heirs and giving you peace of mind.

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