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Updating an estate plan is a forgotten necessity for New Yorkers

New Yorkers should be fully aware of the importance of drafting estate planning documents. There are a seeming endless number of reasons why this is a good idea. Often, however, people who have an estate plan will not update it as needed. Simply having the estate plan is rarely enough. Knowing when and why it is essential to update the plan can avoid long-term problems and regret.

There is no specific time at which a person must revise and update their estate plan. But certain events or situations are obvious tipping points to do so. If a person leaves one state and moves to another, it is wise to remember that estate laws can vary depending on the state. So, if a person is moving to New York, having a law firm that is based in New York and understands all the different variables with an estate plan can ensure that it fits into state laws. Even if the person is not moving to another state permanently, but is getting a second residence, it remains important to account for that in the estate plan.

When family circumstances change, so too should the estate plan. This is frequently due to a newborn child or grandchild, but there could be other cases when it is necessary. It does not always need to be a positive development to spark a change to the estate plan. For example, a person who was listed might have died or there could have been a divorce. A falling out or concerns over a person's behavior and lifestyle could justify a change to the estate plan.

Assets and liabilities are rarely static. Perhaps there was a significant gain in the person's portfolio or they ran into some financial trouble. Property could be sold and no longer warrant being in the plan. As these changes come about, so too must the estate plan change. Retirement plans might no longer be up-to-date. An estate plan and the person named on it could be different from a beneficiary on a retirement plan and this can cause issues. It is important to change both to be in sync. Finally, a trustee or executor could no longer be the right person for the job. That too must be adjusted.

A fundamental mistake people make with their estate plan is to complete it and then leave it as is as life moves on. Change is inevitable and it is therefore vital to periodically review the estate plan and update it as required. An estate planning law firm can help with creating and updating the document and it is key to act as soon as possible to make sure the document suits the person's needs.

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  • I wanted to write to say how pleased my wife and I were at your professional handling of our estate planning and preparation of new wills. We were put at ease by your visit to our home for an interview and were pleased that you listened to us and captured the things that we felt were important.

    --Robert and Christine Simonson, Fairport
  • In order to finalize the documents we came to your office and were greeted in a very professional manner and we could not have asked for finer service. We left with copies of everything we needed and feel very confident our needs have been met. Thanks again. We will surely recommend you should the opportunity arise.

    — Christine and Robert Simonson, Fairport
  • I have been working with Weinstein & Randisi for about two years now. Elizabeth Randisi, through a very thorough process, has helped my wife and me determine what is really important in our lives. Thus, we were able to draft a living will that reflected our most important values regarding our estate.

    --David and Ajia Cherry, Fairport
  • I would like to give a testimony for Elizabeth Randisi, an estate attorney with Weinstein & Randisi. Her knowledge of wills and estate planning was clearly demonstrated in her presentation to us. Realizing our need for a will, my husband and I went to see Elizabeth.

    --Kathy and Gary Gray, Webster
  • Filing for Medicaid is never an easy or fun process. However, working with the Weinstein & Randisi firm made the process simple and streamlined. We were able to obtain all files and records regarding Medicaid enrollment within a few days using specially prepared checklists and verbiage recommended by our assigned paralegal.

    --Ajia and David Cherry, Fairport
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Weinstein & Randisi - estate planning

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