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Updates are key to successful estate planning and administration

Estate owners in Illinois and beyond typically want to do whatever they can to help their loved ones avoid legal problems when the time comes to administer their estates. The estate planning and administration process is able to be customized to fit a particular person’s needs and ultimate goals. A key part of the customization process has to do with updating an existing plan as needed.  

Especially if an estate owner’s plan was executed years ago, complications can arise if he or she forgets to regularly review and update documents. For instance, if a certain person is a designated beneficiary and that person’s name changes or he or she dies, it is crucial that the benefactor makes the necessary changes in the estate plan. Not updating a plan can have negative repercussions.  

A person might name a spouse as a sole beneficiary. If he or she divorces that spouse but forgets to update the estate plan, all assets would legally transfer to that person when the estate owner dies. If the estate owner was remarried at the time of death, this could create a complex, contentious situation between the current spouse and the listed beneficiary.  

Any Illinois resident who has questions about the estate planning and administration process can tap into local resources for support. An experienced estate planning attorney can provide information and guidance as to how to execute a solid plan and avoid update problems down the line. In fact, an attorney can remain on hand to periodically review an existing plan and recommend changes as needed.