Times to Update your Estate Plan

It is very important to keep your estate plan updated. There are many factors and life events that affect your estate plan which is why you should keep it updated.

Large estates (those over the applicable exclusion amount) should be reviewed every year.

All other estates should be reviewed every four years.

You should also review your estate plan when the following life events occur:

– Change in value: If the value of your estate has increased or decreased by 20% or more.

– Change in economic status: If the value of your assets, your income level, or your income requirement changes.

Retirement

– Change in occupation or employment

Changes in family situations: If you, your children, or your grandchildren have married, divorced, been born or adopted, passed away, or become ill or incapacitated. Also, if other individuals have become dependent on you.

– Changes in business interests:

  • Formed, purchased or sold a closely held business
  • Reorganized or liquidated a closely held business
  • Instituted a pension plan
  • Executed a by-sell agreement
  • Deferred compensation
  • Changed employee benefits

– Major transactions:

  • Inheritance
  • Substantial gifts
  • Borrowed or lent a substantial amount of money
  • Purchased, leased or sold material assets or investments
  • Changed residences
  • Changed significant property ownership
  • Become involved in a law suit

– Change in insurance coverage: life, health, disability, medical, liability, etc.

Death of a trustee/executor/guardian

Other important changes: Any changes in your life that you feel affect your estate plan.

If you change part of you estate plan, you should review the entire plan to make sure it remains cohesive and effective. Due to the legal complexities of Estate Planning, we recommend that you contact an attorney to create or update your estate plan.

And remember… Estate Tax laws may change at the beginning of 2013.

Source: Waddell & Reed Financial Advisors

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