You might want to change your will every time you make a significant life change to ensure the changes reflect in the will. Here are a few situations where you may wish to alter your will.
You move to a new state - states have different views regarding estate planning. You can change a few sections of your will before permanently moving to a new state to ensure it blends well with the new rules.
You have added a child - adopting a new child or giving birth may require you to amend your will. The new child should be added as a beneficiary.
Divorce - your spouse has a significant share of your wealth. You may consider changing the will before the divorce to avoid future disputes.
Death of an executor or beneficiary- your estate can only be managed by people alive. Therefore, death of a vital party may make you change the will
Buying or selling an asset - estate planning highlights the division of your assets. Buying or selling an asset is a significant change that should reflect your will.
A new law is passed - perhaps, your state has imposed a new law regarding estate planning. The change should reflect to your will to avoid future legal issues.
How to Change Your Will
Many things can prompt you to amend your will, but the above are the main ones. Here are three main ways to change and update your will legally:
• Revoke (Create A New Will)
Creating a new will is a great alternative when making huge changes to your will. For instance, if one of the beneficiaries is dead or you need to relocate, you can revoke the old will and create a new one.
• Add A New Attachment (Coincide)
This is an excellent option if you don't want to revoke the old will. To coincide means to create an addition of the will and attach it to the old will. When using this method, you don't make amendments to the old will or revoke the old will. Instead, the changes are communicated through the new additions usually attached to the old will.
• Amend the Old Will
The third and last applicable method for changing a will involves making the necessary changes without creating a new one. For instance, if you are changing an asset or beneficiary, you will only change that section. However, the change should be handwritten, and you should sign to provide proof that you changed it. Your attorney and witnesses should also be present when making the changes. Otherwise, the will changes will not be valid.
How Often Can I Change My Will?
You can alter your will many times since there are many life happenings. The key is to make timely changes to any big change in your life that affects your will. Your lawyer should help you regularly review your assets and make the necessary changes.
What Should I Do After Changing My Will?
It's vital to re-register your will every time you change it. You should also keep it in a safe place and inform your executor about the latest versions.
If you need help in creating or changing your will, contact Law Offices of James C. Shields. Our team will guide you on creating or making the necessary changes as per your wishes.