When there are problems with certain estate planning documents and decisions, they may not be obvious until years later when it’s time to settle the estate. Errors and oversights can become clear when beneficiaries and loved ones are trying to handle matters after a family member passes. Regular review of an estate plan is important, as is careful consideration during the planning process.

One mistake Louisiana adults make with their estate plans is failing to understand the terms and what they mean. Each plan can be carefully crafted to meet the needs and objectives of the individual, and it’s prudent for each adult to work closely with the legal professional during the drafting phase. By understanding the details of the plan, it is possible to then communicate intentions with family members and beneficiaries.

Another common mistake in the estate planning process is failing to update certain important aspects of the plan as life changes. This may mean updating beneficiary designations after a death, divorce, birth or remarriage. It may also be necessary to update powers of attorney and other aspects of a plan over time. Thankfully, it is possible to update a plan to match the current needs of a Louisiana family and an individual’s goals.

Crafting an estate plan requires thinking long-term. Even so, life is unpredictable, and certain mistakes can make even the most carefully crafted plan impossible to enforce. Updates may be necessary, or it may be necessary to update an existing plan. It may be helpful to speak with an attorney about how to avoid issues that may lead to complications down the road.