When Should You Review Your Estate Plan?

The Law Offices of Joan Grimes explain the five key times in your life you should take the time to review your estate plan. Photo: ©Alexander Raths – stock.adobe.com

This guest post was written by Joan M. Grimes, Esq. and Jennifer L. Wallis, Esq., based in Walnut Creek, California.

Clients frequently ask how often they should review and update their estate planning documents. The American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging recommends a review of your Advance Health Care Directives upon the occurrence of any of the “5 D Events”. However, these events are also a good time to review your estate planning documents.

The “5 D Events”

Death. Has there been a death of a family or friend?  Did you provide for this family member or friend in your estate planning documents? Did you appoint them as an agent under your Advance Health Care Directive or Financial Power of Attorney?

Divorce. Are you getting divorced? If you are getting divorced, you should review your estate planning documents with an attorney. There are some restrictions that limit your ability to change your estate planning documents while you are getting divorced.

Diagnosis. Have you received a new diagnosis? If so, you should update your Advance Health Care Directive to specify any new wishes.

Decline. Are you experiencing a significant decline in health? If so, meet with your estate planning attorney and agents to discuss your wishes and review your documents.

Decade. Have you reached a new decade? This is a good time to review your documents to make sure they still reflect your wishes.

You should review all of your estate planning documents, including your Revocable Living Trust, Advance Health Care Directives and Financial Power of Attorneys upon the occurrence of any of the 5 D’s. If you do not have an estate plan or would like to discuss changes to your existing estate plan, our office offers a free 30-minute consultation available by phone or Zoom. Putting your affairs in order is a gift you give yourself and your family. If you would like to make an appointment, please call 925.939.1680.

This post provides only general legal information and not specific legal advice.  Information contained is not a substitute for a personal consultation with an attorney. 

The Law Office of Joan Grimes • 925.939.1680
1600 S. Main St., Suite 100 • Walnut Creek