Should You Make Changes In Your Current Estate Plan Or Create A New One?

Regardless of whether you are 21 or 51, it is recommended to start working on your will and draft a plan before it is too late. Even though you might still consider yourself and think you have a lot of time left, you do not want to take a chance. That being said, when you create a will early in your life, you might need to change it after major life events, like marriage or the birth of a child. 

Since there are several major life events that might occur, you may question how many times you are allowed to make changes in your will. According to the law, there are no limitations on how many times you can update your estate plan. However, sometimes, it is better to create a new one than make several changes. Consult an estate planning attorney in Monroe, NC, to understand what is best for your situation. 

Which major life events can trigger an update in an estate plan?

An estate plan contains your last wishes. When you go through major life events, such as getting married, the death of a spouse, the birth of a child, or the death of a parent, it calls for changes in the plan. For example, if you had planned on passing down a piece of your property to your spouse but had a divorce, you may no longer want them to gain ownership of your property. 

Some common major life events after which you should consider updating your estate plan include the following: 

  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Having children or adopting 
  • Buying or selling a home
  • Major changes in your finances, such as getting an inheritance
  • Starting or selling a business
  • Changing your address or moving to a new state
  • Death of someone who is a beneficiary in your will
  • Medical conditions, such as a serious disease 
  • Changes in your wishes 

Should you make several small changes in your will or draft a new one?

Major life events can occur throughout your lifetime, which triggers a question of whether you should make the changes in an existing will or draft a new one. The answer varies depending on your situation. 

The draft will still be readable if you have made one or two changes. However, if you have had to alter it many times, the terms may confuse your beneficiaries. The primary reason for the confusion is that the old and new documents must be read together to comprehend the person’s wishes fully. 

Due to this reason, your attorney may suggest drafting a new one.