Now is a good time…

Dear Friends,

Now is a good time to review your estate plan

A few weeks ago, we mentioned the importance of yearly estate plan reviews and with February upon us, now is the time to get started!

For most of us, 2020 was a whirlwind of uncertainty and stress that prompted us to take stock of our life goals and reprioritize. However, even in times of serenity, the beginning of a new year is the ideal time to reassess your goals and financial status, and make any necessary adjustments to ensure you remain on track.

Reflect life changes or change beneficiaries

The most common reason to update an estate plan is to reflect recent life changes or to update or change beneficiaries. Has a loved one passed on? Have there been any marriages or divorces? Have children or grandchildren been born? We often find that when our clients review an old estate plan, they are surprised to see that their beneficiaries are outdated due to life changes that were never addressed in their plan. It is always a best practice to review your estate plan to ensure that named beneficiaries are current.

Consider new tax implications

Exciting life moments such as buying a new house or moving out of state may also impact your existing estate plan. If you have moved out of state, Massachusetts tax laws may no longer be applicable. Similarly, your new home state may have laws that impact your income and assets. Now that we have a new president and administration, there will likely be tax law changes that may require you to adjust your estate plan.

What’s your financial status?

Your estate plan should align with your financial status, so it is vitally important to evaluate your plan each year to ensure your planning reflects any major financial changes. If you have new assets, you will want these included in your plan to help avoid the probate process. Also, some financial institutions do not accept power of attorney documents that are “stale” or of a certain age, so it is important to keep these documents up to date.

Change can be hard, but our maintenance programs were developed to make it easier for you to keep your estate plans up to date. Eckert Byrne offers a yearly Life & Legacy Review (LLR) program for an annual fee. We created the LLR program to address the legal, financial and personal changes that affect our clients’ estate plans and to help ensure that their plans continue to work as intended.

Please visit the following link to enroll and provide payment for 2020. Once received, we will reach out regarding the set up of your personal vault.

To learn more about how we can help you with your estate plan review, please visit our “Maintenance” page on our website.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Kristin Dzialo