4 Reasons To Amend Your Will
After writing your will, it’s essential to visit it once in a while to update it and make amends to it. Change is inevitable. You may have even heard most life coaches use the phrase ‘the only constant thing in life is change.’ Therefore, what you write in your will today may not be the same a few years later.
Most legal experts recommend an amendment every two to three years. Thus, current technology has enabled the availability of online will services. This way, you don’t have to drive to your attorney’s office whenever you want to change your will.
You can’t foresee the changes in your life. Therefore, you can only react to them by updating your will to fit your wishes at that particular time. Below are some of these changes, which should give you a reason to amend yours.
So, read on.
1. There’s Birth Or Adoption Of A ChildWhen there’s a new member in the family, it’s vital to make changes to your will to reflect the same. Whether you adopt a child or you have a newborn, you would want to include them in your will. It would help ensure that they’re taken care of in case of your demise.
In the will, you can mention how the kids will benefit upon reaching adulthood. In addition, it’s vital to name their guardian or property manager when the kids are still minors. At this point, you can also execute the durable power of attorney step. It ensures you have someone who can reasonably act on your behalf if you aren’t able to.
2. Assets In Your Ownership Have ChangedThe value and number of properties under your ownership can increase or decrease over time. It can be due to new acquisitions, sales, or split ownership. Thus, it would be best to amend your will to reflect such changes.
Even if they’re minor changes, including such changes in your will ensures there’s no conflict on what happens to them when you aren’t around. In the amendment, you can indicate if a percentage of the property will go to charity. Alternatively, you can mention who has power of attorney and for what duration.
3. Location ChangeLaws governing a will’s execution differ from one legal jurisdiction to another. You may decide to move to another state or country during your life. Therefore, it’s crucial to consult the legal translation in your new location. If you’re in the US, moving to another state can make your existing will non-executable or insufficient. It can put your beneficiaries and your estate in limbo.
Additionally, if the executor in your will moves to a different location, it would be best to seek legal advice from your attorney on how this affects your will. It may require you to change the executor or take extra-legal steps to keep it in effect.
4. When There Are Relationship ChangesHow you relate with the people in your life can change from time to time. Someone you are close with today may not be as crucial in the future. Thus, when such circumstances happen, it would help to effect this change if the person was in your will.
For instance, if you get married, it’s vital to make amendments to your will reflecting your new marital status. In some countries, a will prepared before marriage is revoked automatically. Thus, it means details on how you want your property distributed and managed in case of your death become null and void. Some states in the United States of America (US) give a third of your estate to the spouse. Therefore, if you have a specific arrangement you would like executed, amending your will once you marry is vital.
Alternatively, in case of divorce or separation, some countries don’t revoke your will made during the marriage. Thus, you need to change your will as you no longer wish your ex-spouse to feature in your estate. Additionally, if you re-marry, you may have to adjust your will to reflect any prenuptial agreement with your new spouse. You can also opt for a qualified terminable interest property (QTIP) trust.
Family, business, and friend relationships can also warrant your need to amend the will. A family member can pass on, or you’re no longer close to them as before. The same applies to your friends. In a business relationship, you may have named a business partner as your estate’s manager. However, if business goals change, it’s vital to effect this in your will.
If a guardian or executor in your will passes on, you should also amend it. Overall, when a relationship that affects your estate’s legal standing changes, it’s vital to amend your will.
ConclusionThe frequency of amending your will can depend on events in your life. You may move places, have a child, marry, divorce, or someone close to you dies. These are some of the reasons to amend your will. Even if nothing major happens, it would be best to amend your will every two to three years.
Do You Need An Attorney?
If so, post a short summary of your legal needs to our site and let attorneys submit applications to fulfill those needs. No time wasted, no hassle, no confusion, no cost.