If you are ready to change your estate plan, amending your will is worth considering. While incorporating trusts in your estate plan is often a popular way to update your plan, your will continues to serve as the cornerstone of your estate plan. The decisions outlined in this document are crucial. If you change your mind about any of these decisions, or if relevant circumstances change, you must be able to update and amend your will. To ensure that any changes you make are legally binding, you will want to follow the actions below and work with an experienced estate planning lawyer at The Millman Law Group. When you work with someone who understands the procedures required, you can rest assured that your updated wishes will be honored.
Write a Codicil
A codicil is a written document that describes how to amend your will. This option is best for minor updates to an existing will, such as changing the executor’s name or the specific dollar amount to give to a beneficiary. To create a codicil, you write down the changes and sign the document in front of two witnesses and a notary – the same signature requirements as your will. Make sure your codicil is then kept with your original will.
Revoke and Rewrite
If you wish to make more substantial or numerous changes, creating a codicil may create more problems and increase the risk of litigation after your death. Instead, in this case, it may be best to revoke your existing will and execute a new one. Once again, it is best to consult with an experienced and informed estate planning attorney to ensure that the original will is correctly revoked and that the new one is valid.
Write a Letter of Instruction
Some changes to your will are not technically changes to your will. In those cases, a Letter of Instruction may be enough. A Letter of Instruction lets you explain the decisions in your will and provide additional instructions or information that your executor or beneficiaries may desire. This is not a legally binding document. Additionally, if you are replacing an existing Letter, it is best to sign and date it.
Add or Replace a Personal Property Memorandum
If your existing will has a personal property memorandum, you may replace it. This memorandum is an attachment to a will that lists your personal property along with important details like account numbers, property location, and approximate value. For the memorandum to be used during probate, your will must reference the memo. If you are replacing your memorandum, it is wise to sign and date it so people know which version is the most recent.
The start of the new year is a great time to amend your will if you have not done so in many years or since significant life events have occurred. The Millman Law Group can help you find the best method to make changes.
Estate Planning Made Easy With Millman Law Group
Millman Law Group, PLLC is rare because it’s one of the only law firms that offer life planning in South Florida. From life care planning to the preparation of detailed estate plans, Millman Law Group has committed to serving Floridian elderly communities in Boca Raton, Palm Beach County, Ocean Ridge, Hillsboro Beach, and many other areas since 2018. Our dedicated team also specializes in special needs trusts and catering to any age demographic because we know for certain it’s never too early to start preparing you and your family for your future. For the latest news in estate planning and elder care law, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, and Pinterest. You can also contact us at 561-463-6480.