Livens & Reed, PLLC

When does a will need to be updated?

For many people in Texas, the process of planning for a future in which they are not present is a difficult task to undertake. However, creating a will and other estate planning documents often provides peace of mind to many people, because with it comes the knowledge that they have expressed their wishes and taken action to provide for minor children. But a will is not a static document and needs to be updated periodically.

Many people who have gone through the creation process often wonder how often it is necessary to review such documents. Many professionals recommend reviewing a will and other documents anytime there is a significant change in family status or assets. This includes a marriage, birth, divorce or death as well as making a large purchase (such as a home) or selling a significant asset.

Even without a major change such as those listed above, a periodic review is beneficial. Those with experience with estate plans recommend checking it every year -- even if it is a quick read through and a decision not to change anything. This allows a person to carefully consider whether those who are named as guardians of minor children or executor of an estate, for examples, are still able to fulfill those responsibilities. 

If it is ultimately determined that minor changes are required, attaching a codicil may be appropriate. If major changes are necessary, it may be necessary to write a new will. Fortunately, there are attorneys in Texas with experience with the process who provide advice in the creation and revision of such documents, ensuring that a person's wishes are adequately expressed.

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