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Updating Your Will: 5 Reasons Why You May Need To

You may not realize it, but your estate plan is always changing. You might get married to a new spouse, have children or grandchildren, become disabled. In fact, the value of your estate — including real estate holdings, annuities and other assets — can increase or decrease dramatically over time. So it’s important to make sure that you are updating your will and reflects these changes. 

As your life changes, so can your will. Whatever the reason, updating your will is an important step toward protecting your legacy. There are a few reasons why your will may need updating: here are a few to keep in mind.

1. You’ve moved

Moving to a different state means it’d most definitely time to update your will. If your death occurs in a different state than where your will was written, that state will handle your estate — not the state where the will was created. This may become an issue for your friends or family. Each state required different laws. Just because your previous residence only required one witness signature, doesn’t mean your new state will require the same. If your will is not updated, these laws can effect the person you designate to handle your estate.

2. You’ve sold your home and bought another

Sometimes you don’t move out of state – just to a different neighborhood. However, your address has still changed, and therefore, must be updated in your will. Most people state their desire to give their home to their children. But if they have lived in that house for years and then move out without changing the address stated in the will, it can cause invalidity with the property. 

3. You purged your possessions.

Sometimes spring cleaning can get a little out of hand. If you’ve downsized, it may be time to update those changes in your will. If certain items are listed that you no longer own, they will be skipped over. However, recipients named will not get anything else in its place. Because of this, you may want to move things around to ensure that your things go to the correct designated recipients.

4. Your relationships have changed.

It may have been years since you’ve last updated your will. You may have had other loved ones past away or new grandchildren added to the family. Because of this, you may want to leave money to them or remove previously deceased from your recipients. You may have also joined a charity or nonprofit that you would wish to leave money for. Relationships change constantly, and it is important to keep those changes updated in your will.

5. Your financial situation or the value of your assets have changed.

When you write a will, you make a lot of important decisions about how your assets are allocated at death, but maybe those values have changed. You may have acquired a new home, or discovered a collectable that, 10 years ago was worth nothing, but is now priceless. You want to make sure those values are updated to ensure that your recipients are obtaining the correct financial assets. Incorrect dollar amounts could cause issue for your family and friends, so it is important to update your current net worth as often as it changes.


At Grand Strand Law Group, we understand that will writing is a complex process, and we want to help you develop an effective plan to protect your assets and loved ones. Give us a call at 843.492.5422 and learn more about establishing your last will and testament.

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