There are some responsibilities that you have to take care of that require your attention just once, and you may think that drawing up a will or otherwise planning your estate is one of these things. However, the reality is that nothing could be further from the truth. Estate planning is an ongoing process, and if you want to make sure that you are protecting yourself and your family at every juncture it is important to recognize the fact that the changes that take place in your life can and do impact your estate plan.
The key is to understand this from the start and act accordingly. Many people procrastinate far too long before putting an initial estate plan in place, and because it was so difficult for them to get motivated enough to make that first move they may breathe a sigh of relief, put some documents in a lock box, and forget about the matter.
But then they may get divorced, and one of their children may get divorced as well and be involved in a bitter property dispute. Grandchildren may be born, and unfortunately some people who are included in the will or named as beneficiaries of some sort may pass away. A business may be bought or sold, investments may appreciate significantly in value, and indeed, any number of life-changing financial events could take place over the years.
All of these types of things can make your existing estate plan obsolete. In the big picture it is simply a matter of common sense, but time can pass quickly and you can have every intention of updating your estate plan but keep putting it off and putting it off until it becomes too late. If you do, it will be those that you love the most who are left behind to suffer the consequences.
Mr. Kraft assists clients primarily in the areas of estate planning and administration, Medicaid planning, federal and state taxation, real estate and corporate law, bringing the added perspective of an accounting background to his work.