Reviewing & Updating Your Will
Nov. 16, 2022
Creating a will allows an individual to provide detailed instructions about how their assets and property should be managed, distributed, or disposed of when they're gone. However, it is important that you update your last will and testament regularly to ensure that it is consistent with your current wishes. An experienced Ohio estate planning attorney can enlighten you about when to review or update your will.
David Bale is dedicated to offering comprehensive and knowledgeable guidance to clients in estate planning-related matters, including wills. He's available to discuss your unique situation, help review your last will and testament, and update the document accurately and efficiently. The Law Office of David G. Bale is proud to serve clients across Westerville, Worthington, Delaware County, and Franklin County, Ohio.
Updating Your Will
Many estate planning attorneys often advise their clients to review and update their wills and other estate planning documents regularly. You can update your will annually or every three to five years.
Updating your will regularly – or when there is a major life event – can help ensure that the new details agree with your current wishes. In addition, updating your will can also help account for changes in estate planning or tax laws and reflect changes in your life.
However, when updating your will, it is imperative that you work with an attorney. Your legal counsel can recommend whether you should draft a codicil to the existing will or make a new one. Also, your attorney can make sure it's done properly – signed and witnessed – and in a timely manner.
When to Update Your Will
Essentially, you should review and update your will after any major life event. These include:
Changes in Marital Status: This is among the obvious reasons to update your will. If you were married or went through a divorce recently, you should amend your will.
New Additions: You may want to update your will after adding a new member to the family. This may include the births of children or grandchildren or adoption.
Loss of Beneficiaries: If a named beneficiary or heir in the will passes away, you may need to amend the document. This may require you to redistribute assets or name a new beneficiary.
When Going on a Trip: If you're embarking on a long or extensive trip, you should consider reviewing and updating your will.
Gaining or Losing Assets: You may want to update your will if you have acquired more assets or lost some assets to be inherited.
Changing Designations: You may want to amend your will if you want to change some designations, such as guardians, personal representatives, executors, beneficiaries, witnesses, or caretakers.
Others: Some other reasons to update your will include:
When minor children and grandchildren become adults
After starting a new business
Changes in tax laws
A beneficiary becomes incapacitated or requires special needs
Diagnosis of a terminal or critical illness
Significant increase or decrease in estate value
If you are considering reviewing or updating your will, you need to reach out to a skilled Ohio wills attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer can evaluate your unique situation and determine whether to update the existing will or draft a new one.
Making a Change vs. Drafting a New Will
When you want to update your will, among the available options is drafting a codicil or making a new will. A codicil is an addition which explains or amends a will. If you only intend to make minor changes, you can make a codicil to your existing will. The codicil will be signed and witnessed like the existing will.
However, if you have major changes – and to mitigate any confusion after your death – you can simply revoke the existing document and draft a new will. However, ensure that the new will agrees with your current wishes. Also, have the new will signed and witnessed correctly.
Legal Guidance You Can Trust
Creating a will isn't a one-time task. Whenever you experience a major life event, it is important that you update your will. This way, you can ensure that it reflects your current wishes. An experienced estate planning attorney can explore your available options to update your will and help you navigate key decisions.
The Law Office of David G. Bale guides testators through the complex procedures involved in reviewing and updating their wills. As your legal counsel, David Bale will enlighten you about your legal options and determine the best way to proceed. Also, he will help review and amend your will and make sure that the new changes are legally binding. David Bale will work diligently to address your needs and concerns and help you achieve your estate planning goals.
If you are thinking about reviewing or updating your will, contact The Law Office of David G. Bale today to schedule a simple consultation. David Bale can offer you the brilliant advocacy and personalized legal counsel you need to navigate key decisions in your estate planning matters. The firm is proud to serve clients across Westerville, Worthington, Delaware County, and Franklin County, Ohio.