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When a person should create or update a will

Having a will is important because it not only determines how someone's assets will be distributed upon their death, but it can also be used to name a person to take care of an individual's children. A Nevada resident who dies without a will is considered to be intestate, and these matters are decided based on state and federal law. Although most adults need to have a will, it's particularly important to create or update one when people marry, divorce or move to a new state.

When a person gets married, their desires for how their assets should be distributed are likely to change. Along with creating a will that names a spouse as a beneficiary, people may also want to update life insurance policies and retirement accounts to name their new partner. Conversely, after someone divorces, people are likely to want to remove a spouse's name.

Individuals may also want to change their will or estate planning documents when they move to a different state. States often have different laws related to estate planning, and people may want to change their will or other associated legal documents to ensure that they comply with the laws of the state they reside in. Failure to do so may invalidate a will or cause other legal issues.

Will planning is just one part of a complete estate plan. Along with wills, people can establish trusts, which allow individuals greater control over how their assets are distributed upon their death. Powers of attorney can also be helpful since they allow a person to choose trusted individuals to make choices for them, such as the type of medical care they should receive. A lawyer could explain to someone how these documents work and help draft them as well.

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