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What if I have a child after executing my will in Illinois?

 Posted on August 24, 2021 in Uncategorized

It is a wise and responsible decision for Illinois residents to have an estate plan. Even if it is a barebones will that details how the person's property will be distributed at the time of death, it is a key document to have. This is true for people of any age. For some, however, there are life changes that arise after they have completed a will. That might include getting married, divorced and having children. For those who have completed a will and have a child after it has been executed, there are certain legal facts to know.

Understanding how having a child impacts a completed will

For the testator, the contents will not be relevant for the child except in certain circumstances. If, for example, the child is left out of the will because it was not updated to reflect the birth, he or she will still be entitled to get the portion of the estate upon the testator's death. It will be the same amount as if the testator had died intestate (without having completed a will). The share the child will receive depends on the rest of the family. For example, there might be a spouse and other children who will be entitled to portions of the estate. A different issue is if the testator intended to leave the child out of the will. Disinheriting the child would need to be addressed in the will.

Unusual factors can impact an estate plan

Most people will think about their will in its most fundamental terms to ensure their heirs get the property as they see fit. This is true for people of any age and all financial positions. Even though the law addresses a case in which the testator had a child after the will was executed, it is still wise to think about how that can impact the estate plan. Updating a will and considering alternatives can be useful.

Creating or updating an estate plan can be complicated

Regardless of the issue and concern, the estate plan should reflect the person's life and needs at the time and as they evolve. This means that the document should be assessed and altered as needed or it should at least be known what a life event such as having a child means. For assistance, it is useful to have advice from the outset to avoid problems that can hinder the testator's plan.

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