If you have worked hard all your life, saved and invested what you earned, it’s now time to retire. Like many retirees, you may decide to relocate to a different city, state, or even country. The Harrison estate planning attorneys at the Law Offices of Kobrick & Moccia explain why you relocating for retirement should trigger an update of your estate plan.
Why Is Updating My Estate Plan Important?
All too often, people go to the trouble of creating a comprehensive estate plan, then completely forget about the plan. In fact, failing to update an existing plan is one of the most common, and potentially most detrimental, estate planning mistakes. As both your family and your estate grow, you need to account for that growth in your estate plan. Beneficiaries need to be added when you marry or become a parent. Fiduciaries need to be considered as current ones age. Additional tools likely need to be added to your plan to help achieve additional goals, such as asset protection, long-term care planning, and probate avoidance. There are several common life events that should trigger a review and revision of your estate plan. Relocating for retirement is among those life events.
Are You Relocating for Retirement?
Seniors decide to relocate when they retire for a variety of reasons. For some, being close to adult children and grandchildren is a strong motivation for relocating. For others, the high cost of living couple with a lower fixed income makes staying where they are unrealistic. A recent study conducted by Wallet Hub ranked New York 40th overall and 46th in the sub-category of “affordability.” Many retirees choose to relocate outside the U.S. because they can get so much more for their retirement dollar in other countries. Regardless of the reason for your decision to relocate, once you have made that decision it should be followed with an update of your estate plan.
Why Does Relocating Trigger the Need to Update My Estate Plan?
Your estate plan should be reviewed and updated around the time you reach retirement age anyway. If you are also planning to relocate, you simply have an additional reason to update your plan. When you retire, your financial picture will almost surely change. You might decide to sell, or cash in, investment assets or begin accepting distributions from retirement accounts. You will likely lose your employer sponsored health insurance, prompting the need to consider long-term care planning. Your children are grown, meaning you no longer need to protect their inheritance. All of those changes that tend to occur when you reach retirement age should warrant a review of your existing plan. If you add in the fact that you also plan to relocate, you should be motivated to take the time necessary to update your estate plan to ensure that it reflects your current life. To start with, if you relocate to another state – or country – it is imperative to determine how the laws in that state or country will impact your existing estate plan. If you have a funeral component in your estate plan, you may need to make changes to that to account for the fact that you have moved as well. Purchasing real estate in another state/country must also be taken into consideration within your estate plan. Owning real estate in more than one state could require more than one probate process while owning real estate in another country may require a totally new estate plan. Failing to plan for things like this could result in your estate being tide up in probate for years.
Contact the Harrison Estate Planning Attorneys
Please feel free to download our FREE estate planning worksheet. If you have additional questions or concerns regarding the need to update your estate plan when you retire, contact the Harrison estate planning attorneys at the Law Offices of Kobrick & Moccia by calling 800-295-1917 to schedule your appointment.