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Arlanson Law Offices
Five Assinippi Avenue
P.O. Box 111
Hanover, MA 02339
(781) 659-5900


When should I review my Estate Plan (Will/Trust/etc.)?

Once an Estate Plan is drawn and put in place, it should not be forgotten. Lawyers attempt to provide all foreseeable contingencies, but circumstances and laws change in ways that cannot be anticipated. You might leave your car to someone in your estate plan and then sell the car. There would be no car for the beneficiary to receive. You might leave your property to your “spouse”, and then get divorced and remarried. Just which “spouse” would you want to receive your property?

Of course, it wouldn’t make sense to go running to your lawyer’s office every few weeks, however regular reviews are a good idea. Just the passage of time can change a good estate plan into an out-of-date plan. Review is also a good idea when certain events take place.

Here is a checklist of events (by no means exhaustive) that may make an estate plan review advisable. The checklist is by no means comprehensive for many other events can also change the effectiveness of an estate plan.

  • When you or your spouse inherits, earns or accumulates significant money. With large sums, astute investing and planning can be very important.
  • When you learn that tax laws have changes.
  • When you are about to take out (more) life insurance.
  • When your pension or profit-sharing plan(s) grow or “vest”.
  • When you start a new job or retire.
  • When your beneficiaries change.
  • When you get married or divorced.
  • When the needs of your beneficiaries or family change.

Whenever the time comes to make changes, check with a professional.

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