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  • Writer's pictureCatherine Swan

6 Life Changes that Mean You Need to Update Your Plan

When you did your estate planning, you felt great.  You put it on your shelf, patted yourself on the back, and hardly gave it a second thought.  Whenever the topic came up in conversation, you said, “Oh, we took care of that years ago,” and thought of the dusty documents occupying shelf space.  You should certainly feel good about making your plan!  But as you and your family grow, your plan should grow along with you.

What has happened in your life since you made your estate plan?  If you’ve had any of these changes, it’s time for a review:

You’ve changed marital status.

Getting married changes everything, including your estate plan.  When you combine your assets, you’ll want a plan that reflects your commitment to each other.  This includes your emergency healthcare documents like a Healthcare Power of Attorney.

Perhaps you’ve gone through a divorce or lost a loved one since you created your plan.  You certainly want to redirect your assets to get maximum protection for your heirs.

…and baby means changes!  If you’ve had children or adopted, it’s time for a review.

You’ve changed jobs.

Whenever you have a significant change in income, it can mean a different strategy for your plan, especially if you have a trust.  You’ll want to update your trust documents to reflect your most current account information, and to keep statements with your estate plan.

You’ve moved.

It happens so often that with the stress of moving, you forget to update your estate plan, but if your plan was created out-of-state, it needs to be reviewed so it matches your current state’s laws.  Consider it as part of moving along with mail forwarding at the post office.

Your children have flown the nest.

Even though they’re not at home, they’re still your babies, and we know you love them.  You want to make sure they are protected even if they’re no longer minors.  Swan Law will include emergency healthcare documents for your adult children as part of your estate plan.

You’re ready to leave a legacy.

We know it’s hard to think about what would happen to your kids if something happened to you, so maybe your plan was created just to cover those kinds of catastrophic emergencies.  But lately, a life event might have prompted you to think more deeply about what you’d like to leave behind; sometimes, it’s a surgery or a death of someone close to you that’s made you reevaluate. We can help you make sure your plan is comprehensive and will achieve your desired effects.

You’re getting ready to retire.

One of the perks of creating a Legacy Plan is that it helps you get your financial house in order.  If you’ve reconsidered your retirement strategy in recent years, or if you’re on the cusp of retirement, it’s a great time to meet with your attorney and make sure your current plan is still in line with other goals.  You might be considering a move to be closer to growing grandchildren or redistributing financial assets, and we’re on your team to make this transition as smooth as possible.

There are many instances that warrant an estate plan review.  Luckily, Swan Law includes reviewing your plan every three years, to address these and other kinds of changes.  Learn more about what we do by calling 970-879-1572 or emailing

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