In the past, you may have taken the time to put together an estate plan for your family. This is an important step towards ensuring that your affairs are in order, that your loved ones will be provided for, and that the choices that you would like made with regard to your end-of-life care are clear. Estate planning is truly a lifelong journey, however. Just as your life will change over time, your estate planning documents should be revised and updated accordingly. The following is an overview of what to expect during the process.
Your first step towards updating your documents is to contact an experienced Orange County estate planning attorney. This does not have to be the same attorney who originally drafted your documents. After contacting a lawyer, the following steps may occur as part of the updating process:
- If your attorney did not draft your Orange County trust, he or she will review it carefully to understand the provisions and determine how to handle an amendment procedurally.
- The lawyer will ask for your change requests and will explain how those modifications will work within your existing estate plan.
- The attorney will begin drafting your revisions. Some documents, such as a trust, may use an amendment rather than having to be completely re-created. Others, such as a power of attorney, may be re-done entirely.
- Your legal professional will walk through the draft documents with you to ensure that you fully understand the revised documents.
- Once all of your requested changes have been made, the documents will be finalized, and you can schedule a formal signing.
- If your attorney is keeping the originals at his or her office, you will receive copies of your documents for your records.
- If you are keeping the originals, be certain that they are stored in a safe place where they will be protected, even in the event of a fire.
To learn more about modifying an estate plan, view our free pamphlet, The Ten Things You Must Know before Creating (or Amending) Your Will or Trust. Our office of experienced Anaheim estate planning attorneys can provide further guidance. Call our office today at (714) 459-5481 for a consultation.