If you’ve already created an estate plan, take a moment to give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back. Now, if you’ve created an estate plan and have moved to another state, you should take an additional minute to assess your plan. In general, your estate plan is valid in your new state, but you should take the time to go over the details with an attorney in case you need to make some small changes. There are several options you have when you’ve created an estate plan in one state and later move to another.
Option 1: Do Nothing. In general, your estate plan is not invalidated simply because you choose to move. Every state recognizes the validity of the laws of all the other states, and an estate plan created in one state will be valid in every other as long as it meets the legal requirements of the state in which it was created. Some states, however, may still require you to comply with their rules for estate planning for some assets, such as real estate located in your new state.
Option 2: Review And Update Your Plan: Your estate plan probably contains specific documents such as a will, living will, health care power of attorney and trusts. Take some time to review these, keeping an eye on when you created the documents. If they are more than a few years old, you may wish to update them to take into consideration changes in the law or family circumstances that have occurred since then.
Option 3: Create State-Specific Documents: Relax, there’s probably no need to completely re-tool your estate plan. However, you may want to create some documents anew, such as your living will or health care power of attorney. State laws on some documents can differ significantly, and the practical concerns of using a document created in another state make it prudent to create new documents so the people in your new state will not have a problem determining the document’s validity.
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