Reasons to change a will: Part I

A Missouri resident who is compelled to face that person's own mortality often finds it beneficial to consult an attorney in order to create a legal will that will protect the family and loved ones, even after the person has passed away. Many people consider making a will the ultimate form of responsibility since it involves taking care of the person's loved ones and dependents.

However, it should be noted that just making a will and keeping it in a drawer or a safe to be brought out only when the testator dies does not always serve everyone's best interest. Since people and priorities change, the person should update the will on a regular basis and be vigilant about the various conditions that are mentioned in that document.

One of the major reasons why people make a will is if that person has recently remarried or has additional children. In most cases, Missouri law recognizes the spouse's right to property and the estate of the person who has passed away, even if no will exists. However, the testator might have some specific wishes, which the person may want the attorney to incorporate into the will.

Furthermore, just like the other spouse needs to be included in the will that the attorneys drafted, the testator may also wish to change the will after a divorce. Depending on the divorce, the person may not wish to bequeath anything to the former spouse or change the will to reflect how the assets should be distributed after the divorce.

In the event that the testator was never married but was in a domestic partnership or dated someone for a long time, that person may wish to include the significant others in the will. In most cases, without specific instructions incorporated into the will, a girlfriend or a boyfriend will not inherit anything if the testator dies before that person has had a chance to revise the will.

Source: FindLaw.com, "Changing a will," accessed on Aug. 6, 2015

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