Life changes, and having a plan in place for the unexpected can help to make major transitions much more seamless. Estate planning, for example, helps to lay out the succession of your estate upon your passing. While estate law may sound grim, the benefits and security gained from planning your trusts and estate is well worth the stress and effort. Updating your will and estate plan every few years will help to keep you on board for long-term success while avoiding any potential problems that can arise with the changing landscape of our modern society. JDKatz is proud to serve as your team of estate lawyers in Maryland. For years, our experienced estate planning attorneys in Bethesda have worked diligently to create well-rounded strategies that are personalized for each and every client for the best possible outcome. From business structuring to tax law guidance, our firm is here and ready to provide guidance or litigation in a wide range of fields.
One question that we often receive is whether or not an individual’s estate plan will be valid once they move to another state. Estate plans are universal enough to be valid in every state in the US, but the results can vary based on the specifics of your estate and which state you end up in. As your tax law experts in Maryland, the JDKatz team is here to help you every step of the way. Today, we’ll highlight a few parts of your estate plan that may be affected by moving. We always recommend reviewing your documents and checking on local regulations, so be sure to contact our estate law firm if you need assistance.
Last Will and Testament
Your will is one of the foundational elements of any comprehensive estate plan, and wills that are valid in your home state will likely be valid in your new one. Most states have laws in place to allow for this transition, which will help you update your estate plan. It’s important to speak with a professional estate planning attorney to protect your wishes in case any complications occur, such as a different wording for key terms or a beneficiary rule that is now in effect. There are a few key factors in your will that will likely need changing, including:
- Executorship. The Executor of your estate, often referred to as your personal representative, is tasked with the sanctioned duty of taking care of all of your remaining financial obligations after your death. While your Executor in California may have been ideal for handling your local estate, he or she will face serious struggles completing these tasks after you have moved to Maryland. Many states have laws in place that forbid individuals to serve for geographical reasons. The last thing you want is for your family to face Executor issues in probate court!
- State marital laws. States vary on their views of how married couples inherit and own property. There are nine states that rely on “community property” rules, where spouses jointly own every piece of property they acquire while in a union together. Separate property states, on the other hand, view property has owned by the individual that has that asset in their name.
Your will is a document that is very valuable in stating your last wishes clearly. The location of your new residence and the unique combination of local estate laws can drastically change the outcome for your loved ones when you pass away. It’s recommended that you seek out professional help to avoid any unforeseen complications down the road!
Revocable Living Trusts
Living trusts are not held to the same rules as your will, and will likely be valid in your new state. It’s important, though, to review the state of your revocable living trust when you move to ensure that every aspect of the document is accurate and thoroughly covered to avoid problems that may arise in the future. Be sure to compile your assets (both from the old state and new state) into your living trust to avoid going through the probate court after your death.
Proper estate planning can provide security and comfort for your family members while they grieve your passing. While this comprehensive approach to planning for the succession of your estate is meant to be rigid in its coverage, moving to a new state can introduce a few concerns that may lead to big problems in the future. Next time, we’ll continue to discuss the importance of estate law in how it pertains to differences amongst state regulations.
If you are new to the state and need a professional estate lawyer in Maryland to help with your property, be sure to reach out to JDKatz. Our team of friendly, knowledgeable estate planning attorneys will work hard to create an optimal outcome for your family. Contact us today to learn more or to schedule your appointment!