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What Happens to Your Will When You Move?

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Generally speaking, a will that has been validly drafted in one state will be valid under the laws of any other state. Realistically, however, it often becomes problematic when wills cross state lines. Moreover, all estate planning documents need to be periodically updated as a person’s life circumstances change. It is therefore good practice to update all of your estate planning documents after an out-of-state move.
 
The state laws that govern estate planning documents such as wills, trusts, medical directives, and powers of attorney are different in every state. Although these documents may function outside of the state in which you drafted them, there may be extra steps necessary such as locating witnesses and obtaining affidavits. In extreme cases, documents drafted in one state will not be enforced in another state due to the vastly different state laws.
 
Moreover, periodically updating your estate plan will keep your estate planning documents from becoming obsolete. Constantly changing state and federal laws that govern wills, trusts, advance directives, and powers of attorney mean that your documents could become useless shortly after its execution based on new laws.
 
If you have moved to a new state, it would be best to review your estate plan with an estate-planning attorney within that state. Remember to review your estate plan after other significant life events, too.

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