Probably the second-best estate planning advice you’ll ever receive is to make sure you keep your plan updated to reflect changes in your family, your finances, and the law. (The best advice, of course, is simply to make an effective estate plan in the first place.)
But, this brings to mind the question, once you’ve updated your estate plan by making a new Will, what do you do with your old one? The answer is to destroy it. The easiest way to do this is simply run it through the shredder.
Why? Technically, of course, your new Will replaces any old Wills – and it should say so on its face. But, there’s always the chance that, if you have one or more old Wills floating around, they can cause problems that might delay the administration of your estate when you pass away.
Your safest bet is to make sure that there’s only one version of your Will in existence at any given time, and that should be the version that reflects your most current wishes and intentions.
Along with this advice comes a word of caution: never, ever destroy an “old” Will until there’s a fully-signed new one in existence to replace it. Destroying an old Will before executing a new one leaves you with no Will, and this is a situation you don’t want to be in.
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