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Proper estate planning requires periodic reviews

Many Michigan residents recognize the need to create an estate plan. This is the overall plan designed to inform loved ones, medical professionals and the courts of the individual's desires for end-of-life care and the final disposition of one's assets. One often takes great care in establishing the plan and devising the proper documents. However, this is not the end of the process. In addition, reviewing and revising these documents as necessary is an important part of the estate planning process.

Any time there is a change in marital status, it is also time to review the various estate planning documents. A spouse may need to be added or removed from the will, insurance policies, bank accounts, investment accounts and other related documents. Additionally, it may be necessary to add another individual, such as a child or other family member, to these documents.

One's financial status may also change. If one's assets undergo a significant change, either positively or negatively, this may necessitate a change in the estate plan. Some items included in the estate plan may no longer be owned by the individual. Or, the individual may acquire additional items that should be taken into consideration.

Creating an estate plan is the first step. However, this is not simply a one-time deal. Proper estate planning requires the Michigan resident to periodically review his or her situation and make adjustments to the estate plan as needed. An experienced attorney can help one get started and also know when it is necessary to review and revise the overall plan.

Source:, "Get Your Estate Plan in Gear", Christine Benz, Dec. 15, 2017

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