Life can change in the blink of an eye. When it does, Massachusetts residents need to be prepared that their assets and their loved ones are as fully protected as possible. Oftentimes this means revisiting an existing estate plan. Yet, many individuals fail to recognize what types of events may justify an estate plan modification. Hopefully this post will shed some light on the matter.
There are many life events that can reshape the way one’s estate will be distributed unless he or she modifies his or her estate plan. The death of named beneficiaries, divorces, births, the gain or loss of a significant asset, and changes to the law can all require an individual to change existing wills, trusts, and powers of attorney in order to avoid unwanted consequences. For example, if a trust names an adult son and his wife as beneficiaries of a trust but that couple later divorces, the trust’s creator may want to modify the trust to remove the now ex-wife so that she does not inherit the family’s assets.
Failing to update an estate plan can lead to disputes of the distribution of one’s assets. It can even leave valuable assets with individuals who were never intended to inherit in the first place. One of the greatest benefits of estate planning, though, is the fact that the process is entirely customizable, meaning that the estate planning tools at one’s disposal can be tailored to meet one’s needs.
Creating the best estate plan possible given the circumstances requires a strong understanding of the law. This is why many Massachusetts residents who are amidst this process choose to work with a qualified estate planning attorney of their choosing. By talking through the life changes mentioned above, these legal professionals can help individuals utilize the estate planning tools at their disposal to reach their goals for the future of their estates and their loved ones.