Although nobody wants to think about what will happen to their possessions after they pass away, it is critical to create an estate plan, not only for yourself but for your loved one’s peace of mind. Yet, many people still avoid making these plans because they worry about the costs involved, think they are unnecessary or are confused with the process. To help clear up some of this uncertainty, we will answer some of the more common estate planning questions individuals in Northern Virginia have. 

estate planning faq

What Happens If You Pass Away Without a Last Will and Testament in Northern Virginia?

If you pass away without a Will, it will be up to the government to decide what will happen to your property and assets, regardless of your last wishes. Instead, your things will pass on according to state law. For instance, if a person is married and they pass away, their estate will usually pass on to a surviving spouse. However, this can complicate things if the individual does not want all their assets to go to that person. As a result, if you want your property and other belongings to be disposed of differently than what is indicated in the statute, then a Will may be required.

When Should You Start an Estate Plan in Northern Virginia?

You will want to start an estate plan as soon as possible. While most individuals begin thinking about creating some type of estate plan with different meaningful life transitions, such as purchasing a home, having a child, getting married, or receiving an inheritance, in truth, any time is an excellent time to review your possible estate plans with a knowledgeable Northern Virginia estate planning lawyer and determine what actions you should take next.

When Should You Update an Estate Plan in Northern Virginia?

Typically, you will want to update your Will and other estate-planning documents when certain life events occur, such as:

  • A marriage
  • Children, whether by birth, marriage, or adoption
  • The passing of a spouse
  • A change in assets
  • Relocation
  • A divorce
  • Change in the status of a trustee, guardian, or an executor

However, if none of these changes happen within five years, you should still review your estate plan with an experienced estate planning attorney to determine if any updates need to be made.

Contact Ardent Guardian Today To Get the Answers You Need

When creating an estate plan, it is vital to seek counsel from someone familiar with the state’s laws to avoid any potential issues that can hinder the validity of your estate planning documents. That is why if you want to know more about your estate planning options in Northern Virginia, contact Ardent Guardian to speak with a skilled legal professional who can provide the guidance and information you require. 

At Ardent Guardian, we offer clients different packages designed to help take care of their specific legal needs, including services related to estate and trust administration help, trust accounting, court accounting, and trustee services. Reach out to us for more information today.

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