Like many, you may expect your existing estate plan to continue functioning when you move to a different state. After all, putting so much thought and energy into your efforts must mean your documents are valid in all conceivable situations.
Unfortunately, estate planning laws are unique to each region, so there is no guarantee that your current plan will survive an interstate move. Before or shortly after moving, have your estate documents reviewed to ensure they comply with the rules in your new state.
1. Different estate tax burdens
States have different ways to address estate taxes when someone passes away. An estate plan review and update reflecting these differences can save your loved ones from a nasty tax surprise while preserving your legacy.
2. New or different assets
Are you planning to purchase land, a home or a business in your new state? Remember to update your estate plan to account for new assets and to preserve them for the next generation.
3. Different legal will requirements
Is your will legal in your new state? Like other estate planning rules, wills laws vary across the country. For example, many states allow holographic or handwritten wills, but they are not recognized in Washington.
4. Advance directive validity
Again, those pesky laws are not the same in all states. As you might expect by now, your advanced medical directives may not function in another region. Have a professional review your living will or healthcare power of attorney to ensure your instructions are valid in your new location.
If you have any questions or concerns about your Washington estate plan, legal guidance can help you learn more.