When Should You Update Your Will?
Clients often inquire about how frequently they ought to be updating their Will. Some lawyers recommend every 10 years, others may tell you every 5 years– with everyone’s unique circumstances, it is difficult to pinpoint one correct length of time. Instead, a more effective rule of thumb to follow is
significant life changes warrant changes to your Will. Making periodic changes to your Will is a critical way of ensuring that your estate gets distributed in the exact manner that you intended.
Examples of events that justify updating your Will:
- After the birth of a child/grandchild;
- After a divorce;
- If you are contemplating divorce;
- After the passing of an executor or beneficiary;
- After the passing of a spouse or child;
- If you would like to add or remove a beneficiary;
- After moving to another province or country;
- If your executor moves to another province or country;
- If your relationship with an executor or beneficiary breaks down irreparably;
- After starting, buying or selling a business;
- After a substantial change to your financial situation;
- Following any changes to the applicable Legislation.
Making Changes To Your Will
Those wishing to update their Will can simply amend parts of their existing Will or can revoke the entire Will. In situations where the desired change is minor, one may add a codicil to their existing Will. A codicil is a separate legal document, used for smaller modifications such as changing the name of an executor or adding in a beneficiary. When making more substantial or complicated changes, it is best to create a new Will.
Wills: Did You Know?
- Writing “revoked” directly on your Will or crossing out parts will not revoke or change it. For a Will to be revoked, the original must be destroyed completely (e.g. shredded, burned)
- As long as an individual maintains their mental capacity, there is no limit on the number of times a Will can be amended or updated.
How can our Edmonton Wills & Estates lawyers help you?
For over 3 decades, the experienced Wills & Estates team at Bosecke Law has provided both confidence and peace-of-mind to clients, assisting with their estate planning needs. Our lawyers can offer expert advice and update your Will to reflect whatever your current wishes may be. If you or a family member have any questions or concerns regarding your Will, feel free to reach out to us.
If you need assistance or more information regarding the purchase or sale of a home, or for the re-financing of your existing home, we welcome you to contact our office at 780-469-0494 or email us directly at email@example.com.