However, a frequent mistake many Michigan residents make with their estate plans is failing to update their wills after they go through big changes in their lives, such as the birth of a child or grandchild. It may be crucial if after a new marriage.
Why might a will need to be updated?
For those who are newly married, it wise to understand what happens to the surviving spouse and what rights they have if a will is not updated.
Under Michigan’s law of intestate success, when a person dies without leaving a will, their spouse can elect to take a share of their estate. This provision was designed to avoid situations in which a surviving spouse would otherwise be left destitute.
However, other estate planning tools can lead to trouble if a plan is not updated after a new marriage. For instance, a surviving spouse cannot get property that was placed in a trust for the testator’s child, if the child was from a different relationship.
What if the will is not updated after a marriage?
People who have created a will at a relatively young age may be compelled to update it. Even those who are older will generally have cause to update their will. Failure to do so can leave their loved ones vulnerable to state laws, which may lead to results that are different from what they wanted.
For help with all areas of estate planning including crafting the plan and updating it, it is useful to have professional assistance for every possible eventuality.