A will is the foundation of your estate plan. This document outlines what you want to happen to your assets after you die.
According to the CDC Foundation, your will is also where you nominate the executor for your estate and the legal guardian for your dependents. Although creating a will is a major first step in the estate planning process, you should plan on updating your will when certain life situations occur.
Your financial status changes
A significant change to your wealth could alter your tax bracket and impact how you approach estate taxes. Changes to your wealth could also prompt you to make alterations to your beneficiaries or inspire you to leave behind a legacy gift for charity.
Your family grows
If you bring a new child into your family either through birth or adoption, update your will. You will want to make sure that this new child has a legal guardian included in your will in case anything ever happens to you.
Your marital status changes
If you get divorced and do not update your will, your assets could go to your former spouse after you die. You should also change your will after you get married to reflect how you want to distribute your assets.
Although you should make changes to your will following significant life changes, you should also review this document regularly. Keep your will in a safe place where you can access it easily and plan on looking over it approximately once every year or so to ensure it continues to reflect your wishes.