It would be hard — indeed, flatly impossible — to continuously apply norms and expectations applicable to a family unit at one finite moment to that family as it evolves over time.
Families are organic. That is, they are all unique, constantly changing and routinely encountering new circumstances that necessitate revised strategies and planning models.
Given such a reality (namely, that loved ones die, children grow older, family members wed and sometimes divorce, babies are born, new couplings bring blended families and new possibilities, and so forth), it also makes sense that no status quo can permanently attach to an estate plan and its relevant documents.
Quite simply, the estate plans carefully considered and drafted by many families occasionally need revisiting, with material modifications made to them that better reflect current circumstances.
A proven estate planning attorney knows that intimately, and can carefully counsel a client regarding purposeful plan revisions that can keep a family firmly on track concerning its goals and aspirations.
Revisiting and implementing timely and relevant changes to a will, trusts, savings vehicles, insurance policies and other important documents can be crucial to maintaining the viability of an estate plan that was executed in the past.
And the reasons for that can be many and obvious. A second marriage can raise important considerations regarding inheritances for children of a prior marriage. A newly blended family might reasonably trigger considerations surrounding beneficiaries of retirement plans and life insurance policies. Changes might need to be made to wills, trust vehicles, guardianship documents and power-of-attorney designations, as well as in other areas.
An experienced estate administration attorney knows that families are never static and that their fundamental needs change — often, materially so — over time. A proven attorney can carefully review an existing estate plan in light of changed circumstances, and work closely with a client to ensure that family goals continue to be fully promoted through well-considered and carefully updated planning documents.