We recommend that our clients periodically review their estate plans, regardless of whether their estate plan consists of a simple will or a series of revocable and irrevocable trusts. If you do not have a will, you still have an estate plan: the plan of disposition that is dictated by the Oklahoma laws of intestate succession.
Periodic review of your estate plan is necessary because times change, and so do people, plans, goals, economic situations. Your plan should recognize those changes, and implement your wishes.
Typical events that cause many to reevaluate their estate plan include the following:
- Death of a beneficiary.
- Marriage, divorce or remarriage.
- Birth or adoption of a child.
- Death or change of Executor or Executrix.
- Death or change of children’s guardian.
- If you change your name, or anyone mentioned in the Will changes theirs.
- If you change your mind about disposition of your assets.
- If there is a significant change in your assets.
- If you retire.
- If you buy, inherit, or receive assets as a gift.
- Finally, any time you feel uneasy about your Will. Make changes so you do feel comfortable with it.
In addition, state and federal legislation may impact your planning. The enactment of new laws, or changes in old laws may have a significant effect on your estate plan and the techniques available to help you attain your estate planning goals. Due to the rapid changes in some parts of our laws, such as the generation skipping transfer tax, the mere passage of time makes more information available in the form of interpretative regulations, rulings, and decided cases.
You can review your current estate plan by reading your will, trust, or an outline of their provisions. If you have no will, attached is a brief explanation of how the Oklahoma law of intestate succession will dispose of your estate for you.
Significant changes in your net worth, family situation, or goals may suggest the need for professional assistance in reviewing the alternatives available to you, and the ways that others have dealt with similar situations. If you feel that you need assistance for these or other reasons, please give me a call so we can schedule a time to consider your particular situation.
For many, reconsideration of an estate plan is a rushed event, undertaken days or hours before an impending trip. We suggest that you plan for a periodic review of your estate plan, for example annually. It will not take much time, and you owe it to those who are close to you. A fixed date is chosen by many, during times that are otherwise slow so that they will not feel rushed.
We have a wealth of information that may not otherwise be available to you. Please do not hesitate to give us a call if you have questions, or simply wish to confirm your understanding of some of the options or techniques that are available to you. We will be pleased to assist you.
To get started on your Estate Plan updates, click here for a link to the Online Estate Planning Update Worksheet.