After you make a will, a trust or other estate planning documents, it’s easy to file and forget them. But your life changes as the years go by, while the documents remain untouched. Not updating your estate plan periodically runs the risk of allowing your assets to be distributed ineffectively or contrary to how your wishes may have changed over time.
You’ll want your will, trust and other documents to keep up with changes in your property holdings, your family members or your preferences for who should receive what when you’re gone. Additionally, if you created an estate plan long ago, it is possible that outside factors have changed. For example, tax law may be different now or a decision by a Connecticut court may have an impact on how your estate will be handled during probate.
For these reasons, estate planning should not be a one-and-done proposition. We recommend revisiting your estate plan every three to five years. Together with your attorney, conduct a review of your will, trust and other documents. Doing so allows you to:
Account for any changes in the law occurring since the documents were executed.
Make changes to beneficiaries, executors and trustees if desired.
Alter your instructions regarding end-of-life care, in light of advances in medical technology that may allow extended quality of life.
Adjust gifts to charities, universities or other beneficiaries.
Make sure that that any trust has been properly funded and that all property intended to be within it is identified.
We also recommend, in addition to periodic reviews, that you update your estate plan whenever major life events occur. These may be events in your life or the lives of people you named as executors, trustees, beneficiaries or others involved with your plan. Such events include:
Marriage or divorce
Birth or adoption of a child or grandchild
Death, illness or disability of your spouse
Death of a person you named as a guardian of your minor children
Death of a trustee, executor or beneficiary
Purchase or sale of significant assets, such as a business or home
Receipt of a large inheritance by you or your spouse
Updating your will or trust can be as easy as creating a new document to cover the changes. If a significant rewrite is required, it might make more sense to execute a new will or trust or another set of documents.
At Gesmonde, Pietrosimone & Sgrignari, L.L.C. we regularly assist Connecticut clients in the review and update of their estate plans. You can get help from our lawyers whether we wrote your original documents, they were created by another firm or you used a do-it-yourself service. Please call 203-745-0942 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation at our Hamden or East Haven offices or to arrange a virtual meeting.
Gesmonde, Pietrosimone & Sgrignari, L.L.C. is located in Hamden, CT and serves clients in and around North Haven, Hamden, Waterbury, Bethany, Milford, Wallingford, Prospect, Woodbridge, Northford, Madison, Beacon Falls, Branford, Cheshire, North Branford, East Haven, Naugatuck, Meriden, Ansonia and New Haven County.
Attorney Advertising. This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at
this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client
[ Site Map ]