Starting your estate plan early in life ensures that your affairs are in order and easy to manage throughout your life. Having a will in place also helps lessen the burden on your family if an untimely tragedy should occur.
Even if you write your will early, though, there are important lifetime milestones that can massively change your priorities and warrant significant changes in your estate plan. You can prepare accordingly by knowing when the best times are to update your will or use these milestones as an opportunity to start your estate plan if you have not already done so.
When you are expecting a new child
Welcoming a new child to your family is an event that can particularly impact your estate planning priorities. You may consider updating your will to mention your new child as a beneficiary and to name an alternate legal guardian for your child in the event that you become unable to care for your children any longer.
When you marry or divorce
Marriage marks another occasion when you may wish to add someone to your will as a beneficiary of your estate. If you decide to undergo a divorce, it is equally important that you consider removing your spouse as a beneficiary in your will.
When you retire
As you approach retirement age, there are other unique considerations to account for in your will. It may be prudent to include a power of attorney to ensure that a trusted agent can handle your affairs for you if you become incapacitated.
Putting off writing a will can cause confusion regarding your estate if a tragedy occurs without your intentions being in writing. Updating your will regularly throughout your lifetime can also save you the stress of organizing all your priorities at once.