Updating Your Estate Plan

Updating Your Estate Plan in Minneapolis

Protecting Your Legacy in Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Throughout Minnesota

Building an estate plan allows you to protect your interests, loved ones, and assets, and legacy. However, establishing estate planning documents is only step one of an ongoing process.

The reality is that as you get older, your life changes. People enter and exit your life, you may get married, you may separate, you may have children, and you may gain or lose significant assets. Your estate plan should reflect all of these major life events.

Our experienced estate planning attorneys at Guttman Law can help you navigate the process of updating your estate plan in Minneapolis as you experience changes in your goals, needs, or life circumstances. We are prepared to serve as your advisors for all of your estate planning needs. Our team is available to answer questions about what types of life events warrant a prompt review of your estate planning documents, and we can work to make timely modifications as your life evolves.

If you have an existing estate plan and are concerned about making updates, do not hesitate to call (612) 324-4055 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.

Why Do I Need to Update My Estate Plan in Minnesota?

In creating an estate plan, you are working to protect your interests and wishes when you are no longer here or are unable to communicate. When you implement estate planning documents, they reflect your wishes and interests at that time. As your life changes, so do your wishes and interests.

Your estate plan should include all of your assets and beneficiaries that you wish to provide for. If you do not review and update your estate plan periodically, you risk excluding newer assets and potentially subjecting them to probate. You also risk inadvertently excluding loved ones, such as newer children, that you intended to support.

When Should I Update My Estate Plan in Minnesota?

Generally speaking, it is wise to assess your estate plan on a frequent and regular basis. At a minimum, you should review your estate plan every 3 to 5 years. However, there are numerous circumstances that will warrant a review and possible updates to your existing estate plan documents.

You should promptly make plans to update your estate plan in Minneapolis when any of the following life events occur:

  • The birth or adoption of a child or grandchild. You will likely want to name children and grandchildren as a beneficiary to some of your assets. You will also need to name a guardian for any minor children of your own in your will.
  • Your child becomes a legal adult. When your child turns 18, you may wish to reconsider what types of assets you wish to leave to them. The legal mechanisms for leaving assets to minors versus legal adults can vary greatly.
  • You marry, remarry, or divorce. When you marry, you will likely wish to list your spouse as a beneficiary and incorporate marital property into your estate planning documents. Divorce can have a tremendous impact on your assets and consequently estate plan. For example, Minnesota law automatically revokes any provision in a will that mentions your spouse.
  • You reconsider your overall financial goals or experience a significant change in financial circumstances. As your financial situation evolves, so do your goals for managing and preserving it. “Significant” changes in financial circumstances might include buying or selling a home, gaining or losing a substantial stream of income, receiving a large inheritance, or starting or closing a business. Adjustments to your estate plan can help you account for new assets and objectives.
  • You or your spouse become disabled or seriously ill. A serious injury or illness can be devastating, and you should take immediate steps to create contingencies should one or both of you become unable to communicate. This can include creating or modifying advanced healthcare directives and appointing powers of attorney.
  • One or more beneficiaries passes away or leaves your life. If you no longer wish to leave property to one or more beneficiaries, you should ensure that they are removed from your will or trust. If a beneficiary passes, you should consider leaving the asset or assets intended for them to someone else.
  • Your named guardian, power of attorney, healthcare representative, successor trustee, or personal representative passes away or experiences a change in circumstances. You select someone that you know and deeply trust when bestowing them estate planning-related responsibilities. Should one or more of these agents leave your life or pass away, you should immediately update your estate planning documents and name replacements.
  • New federal or state laws alter rules for taxes, investments, and/or estate planning documents. Part of effective estate planning involves minimizing the impact of estate taxes and other rules governing financial transactions. Our firm monitors evolving legislation that can impact estate planning and can advise when changes to your plan may be necessary.

How Does Divorce Impact an Estate Plan in Minnesota?

Many understandably put their spouse at the center of their estate plans. Divorce is never easy, and no one plans for it. However, you will need to take swift steps to address your change in circumstances. Our team is familiar with the steps that need to be taken with your estate planning after a divorce and can help you avoid common errors and oversights.

Following a divorce, our experienced lawyers can help you:

  • Revoke and replace your existing will. Minnesota law will automatically revoke any provision that mentions your spouse once your divorce has been finalized. You should still promptly revoke the entirety of your existing will and formalize a new one with updated beneficiaries.
  • Evaluate impacts to your trusts. If you set up a trust before you were married and managed its contents independently from your spouse, it will likely be considered separate property and be spared from property division. Revocable trusts created with your partner or during the marriage will be subject to property division, so its role in your estate plan will almost certainly need reevaluation once the separation is finalized. Irrevocable trusts typically cannot be touched. This does mean that you will not be able to modify any terms that benefit your ex-spouse.
  • Review and update life insurance policies and retirement accounts. In addition to updating your will and trust, you will also likely need to make changes to any life insurance policies or retirement accounts that name your spouse as a beneficiary. Some of these changes may be negotiated as part of your divorce proceedings, but you should double-check to ensure that they are removed from any and all additional accounts, including any documents addressing cabin planning.
  • Name a new power of attorney. Many name their spouses as their power of attorney. In most circumstances, leaving these designations post-divorce is legal and enforceable, but you will likely wish to update the agents that will act on your behalf should you become incapacitated.

Committed To Keeping Your Estate Plan Current

If you are wondering if you may need to update your estate plan or have not done so for several years, you should consider taking the time to have legal professionals review your documents. Our experienced team of attorneys at Guttman Law can assist you with every facet of updating your estate plan in Minneapolis and can provide the professional and sophisticated guidance that you need to protect your legacy.

Get the peace of mind you deserve. Contact us online or call (612) 324-4055 today!

The Guttman Approach

What Makes Us Different
  • Our Approach Is Highly Personalized

    We take the time to understand the complexities of your situation and develop an individualized approach.

  • Our Goal Is To Educate Clients

    We seek to not only provide a service to our clients but to educate them every step of the way.

  • Our Priority Is Helping Clients Navigate Every Step of the Process

    We are here to support our clients throughout their estate planning journey.

Contact Us Today

We Look Forward To Hearing From You
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.
    • By providing my email address and/or phone number, I agree to receive communications from Guttman Law, PLLC.*
    • Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship.
      Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.