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When do I need to change my will?

On Behalf of | May 5, 2021 | Estate Planning

Creating a will can help your loved ones carry out your final wishes after you pass away, but what happens when a major life event changes the circumstances you already laid out in writing? Farm Bureau Financial Services reports that wills play many roles, from outlining financial directives to the care of minor children and may require updates from time to time.

If you have an existing will, you may want to know when it may require revising so your family can avoid lengthy probate hearings after your death.

Financial changes

An increase or decrease in assets may trigger a need to change your will. This can occur for a variety of circumstances, including:

  • Loss of employment
  • Bankruptcy
  • A financial windfall from investment earnings

You may want to notify your beneficiaries of any changes so they understand what caused the change and how it might affect what they receive in the event of your death.

The birth of a child

Whether you have a child later in life or your grown children start having children of their own, you may want to add these individuals to your will. If you have a number of grandchildren, consider a revision to divide some of your assets between them equally. Failing to make these changes could leave one of your heirs frozen out of any legacy, no matter what you intended. It is wise to make revisions as soon as possible.

Other major life events, such as a remarriage, divorce or the death of one of your named heirs may also require you to change your will. If you drafted a revocable trust as well, you may want to change them at the same time to keep them equally current.