When And Why Update Your Estate Plan?

, , , , , ,

Are you thinking about planning for the future ahead of time? While it’s a great step, you’re going to need some necessary guidance along the way regarding updating your estate plan. So, you should keep in touch with your estate planning attorney PG County. Here is everything you need to know about the right time to update your estate plan.

When To Update Your Estate Plan?

Making an estate plan is an important step to take, especially when you’re thinking about your end-of-life arrangements and how your family will sustain and survive after you pass. Making an estate plan is easy and all you need for that is a lawyer, but that’s not exactly the whole gist of the process.

You also need to understand the fact that the estate plan has to be up-to-date with the recent changes in the law. There is no perfect time as to when you should change the estate plan but it’s recommended that you update the plan every 4 to 5 years because this is the window of time in which there can be changes made in the law, there might be things you want to add or remove, etc.

The best way to go about this process is to consult with an estate planning attorney because they can guide you in a better way, as to when is the perfect time, regarding the updating of your estate plan.

Why You Should Update Your Estate Plan?

Here are some reasons why you need to update your estate plan.

An Expanding Family

An estate plan needs to include your entire family, whether it’s as dependents or as potential beneficiaries. If you’ve made an estate plan before and now your family is growing, then this is the time when you have to update it.

This will include all of the family members and as your family grows even more, you can keep updating the plan until everything is over and dealt with. The same case applies when there is a death in the family. It’s important to keep the estate plan updated as the family tree changes.

There Are New Laws

This is probably the most important reason why you need to change your estate plan, otherwise it won’t be applicable in the future. An estate plan needs to align with all of the present estate laws and changes, because if that’s not the case, then all of your hard work will go down the drain. This is where your wills and trust attorney Bowie can help you out a lot.

As soon as there’s a new change or law enforced, your lawyer will walk you through the steps of updating and whether the change is applicable to your estate plan or not.

New Relationship

Family dynamics can change all of the time. You might get divorced or start a new relationship. This is also the time when you need to think about changing your estate plan, especially if the relationship has become official and you’re married again.

This is going to include all of the members of your family in the estate plan and the merit of doing this is the prevention of quarrels in the future, which can be quite inconvenient.

New Potential Beneficiaries

If you already have assigned beneficiaries of your assets, then don’t worry, because that’s also interchangeable. There can be times when you will want to change the beneficiaries or even add more to the list. This can be done by updating your estate plan.

The process is simple and while you’re at it, you can also go over other necessary changes that you might have been putting on the back burner. A lot of people think that picking beneficiaries is a one-time process, but it can be changed when you update your estate plan, so you’re good to go.

Change In Assets

If you’ve recently inherited something or even bought something, like a property or any other tangible asset, then you need to include it in your estate plan and whether it’s been bought or inherited. Keeping your asset record up-to-date is crucial because it’s going to prevent problems in the future.

This tip is for people who already have made an estate plan at a young age and they want to update it as they go, in case of changes or addition to the assets. This is a great step and your family will thank you for thinking in advance.

Children Are Of Age

Since 18 is the age when children graduate to the status of an adult, it’s important to think about them as beneficiaries for your assets. It’s good to keep your children in the loop of things as soon as they hit the age of adulthood.

So, this is the perfect time to update the estate plan and consider your kids as beneficiaries. You will need a handful of documents to make them eligible for becoming beneficiaries and then you’re good to go.

Keep in mind that you can make a minor beneficiary to your estate. They just won’t get it until they reach the age of 18 or 21.

You Want To Add A Will

If your estate plan doesn’t have a will yet, then it’s time to consider adding one. To add a will, you will need to update your estate plan because you’re adding a very important document that has all of the directions and instructions for your family as well as the beneficiaries who want access to the assets to sustain in the world.

Adding a will is very easy in an updated estate plan and you’ll need to come up with a draft for it. The rest is up to the lawyer. At any stage, you can also update the will if you want, in a similar way.

How To Update Your Estate Plan?

If you are facing any of the changes mentioned above and your estate plan needs an update, then here are a couple of ways by which you can do so:

Your Lawyer

First things first, you’ll need to get in touch with your lawyer. Usually, an estate planning attorney can change or update your estate plan. You’ll just need to bring in the necessary documentation and the lawyer will take it from there. Depending on the circumstances, the estate plan will be updated within a couple of weeks or a month at most.


In a lot of states, the estate plan can be updated online. This is an easy process and it doesn’t require any physical work either. Depending on the type of update you’re going for, based on the change, you may have to fill up an application, and state your purpose for updating the estate plan.

Once you submit it, you will need to update your estate plan and add in all of the required information and you’re pretty much done. Keep in mind though, that the online estate plan update feature is not applicable everywhere, so it’s a good thing to ask your lawyer first, before doing anything.


Making an estate plan is one thing but updating it timely is another debacle in itself. You need to keep everything up-to-date with help of your estate planning lawyer Upper Marlboro.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *