There is no way to predict the future, but there are steps you can take that will allow you to effectively plan for certain contingencies that may arise. One of the steps you can take is to update your estate plan, make sure your papers are in order, and make any changes that are necessary to your long-term legal and financial strategy. Most New York adults with existing plans will benefit from taking the time to review their documents and ensure that everything is in order.
Failure to do this could lead to complications for you and your loved ones in the future. It could even result in difficulties for you if you find yourself incapacitated due to physical injuries or serious illness. An estate-planning cleanup is not only a practical way to ensure that everything is up to date, but it could also lay the foundation for important additions or removal of unnecessary parts.
What should be your approach?
The right clean-up strategy for your specific estate plan depends on the details of your individual and unique objectives for the future. However, in most cases, it is helpful to start by going through all of your documents and organizing them. Once you have done that, the following steps will be helpful for you:
- Ask yourself about the importance and function of every document you find, and determine whether they are necessary for your plan.
- Identify your original documents and take steps to store them properly, such as in a waterproof and fireproof box.
- Scan copies of your original documents so that you have back-ups in case of an emergency.
- Review all documents to ensure that your current documents are still valid and in accordance to tax laws and regulations.
- Review trusts and accounts to ensure that beneficiary designations are up to date.
If you are reviewing the terms of your current estate plan, it may be helpful to seek experienced guidance to assist as you go through your documents and determine what is next for you. This assessment can help you understand if it is necessary to update documents, remove documents or create new documents. All estate plans will benefit from a careful review every few years in order to reduce the chance of complications in the future.