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Hopefully summer time was filled with new adventures and time with loved ones. For many, summer adventures may have included moving. An often overwhelming endeavor, so much usually needs to be accomplished before, during, and after a move. Keeping it all straight can be a lot and some important things may fall by the wayside. Whether it has fallen by the wayside or you were not even aware that it needed to be done in the first place, be sure to update your estate plan after a move. It can be important for a number of reasons and we will discuss some of those reasons here.

Summer Move? Update Your Estate Plan Right Away!

Did you know that different states have different laws that impact estate planning? These differences can include how to properly execute a valid will, among other things. The good news is that if your will was properly executed according to the laws of your former state, it is likely to still be valid pursuant to the laws of your new state. You may, however, need to make several updates to your will and estate plan to help ensure your wishes are honored and your documents most effectively protect your best interests and goals for the future. For instance, you may have previously selected a resident of your former state to serve as personal representative of your estate when the need arises. The laws of your new state, however, may require a resident of your current state to serve as personal representative. Without updating your estate plan accordingly, your personal representative selection would be rendered invalid even though the rest of your will is upheld as valid and effective. Furthermore, there may be several more state law specific implications for your estate plan.

Did you also know that different states use different forms for estate planning tools? If you established a comprehensive estate plan prior to your move, you likely executed some important advance health care directives, such as a living will and health care surrogate. While these forms are likely going to be upheld as valid in your new state, healthcare providers there are not likely to be familiar with the out of state forms. Because of this, they may be reluctant to honor the forms when the need to use them arises. As a result, critical delays in accepting these documents can occur. Executing these documents again on new forms from your new state can help prevent such delays and confusion from occurring.

There are other potentially important estate plan updates you may want to consider in light of the different laws of your new state. Does your new state, for instance, have a state estate tax whereas your former state did not? State estate tax exemption limits can be lower than the federal estate tax exemption limits which means more people may be impacted by estate tax consequences. Fortunately, you can take steps to protect your estate from estate tax liability.

Estate Planning Attorney

Do you have more questions about estate planning? Do you want to know more about when and how to update your estate plan? Contact Verras Law today.