Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Importance of Reviewing Your Estate Plan Regularly

From the Kansas City Star comes an article of a family torn apart by an out-of-date will.
Jone Frost Empie was a former Hallmark executive and reportedly a well-loved aunt. She died in 2003. Her will spelled out exactly what she wanted.

Trust fund 20,000 for care of two cats.
A gold tea pot to a newphew.
A cut-glass decanter to a niece.
Paris Expo 1855 pics to another niece.
Haviland china to another.

The cats died before she did.
The will was drawn in 1985. One of her heirs died in 2002. She sold many of here things when she downsized into a retirement home.

There is a suit filed in probate court in Jackson County to determine exactly who among two Frost relatives gets the punch bowl. It's 2009 and the fighting goes on.

Family fights over objects are often the most bitter and lasting. The article goes on to describe an awful fight over quilts and furnishings between a man's children and their step-mother who prior to his death, liked each other.

Please. Please. Update your will or estate plan every year. Review your powers of attorney. The fights described in the article are tragic, but preventable.

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