Of all the New Year’s resolutions we tend to make, there’s a big one that many people neglect: getting their will and other estate planning documents completed and signed.

A will is not a bucket list item. It’s way more important than weighing whether you should resolve to join a gym. While research shows 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail, usually by February, there’s still time to keep the goal of starting (or finishing) your estate plans.

Why is the beginning of the year an ideal time to tackle this task? Three reasons:

  • You’re fresh off the holiday season, when you have time to reflect on meaningful relationships and how you would want to help care for the important people in your life if something ever happened to you.
  • Changes in tax laws and IRS regulations typically take effect January 1, so it’s important to reality check your documents with an estate planning attorney to make sure they reflect your intentions in light of any new tax issues to consider.
  • Your entire financial life will be top of mind as you pull together the records and info your accountant will need to prepare your tax return. This is the easiest time to get your head around the big picture of your financial life and decide how your assets should be handled when you die.

There’s also a fourth reason, but most of us don’t like to think about it: None of us knows what will happen in the new year. Now is the time to make sure we’re prepared for worst-case scenarios by leaving documents in place to help our loved ones navigate through the legalities and financial particulars occasioned by our — perhaps sudden and unexpected — passing.

Contact a Lawyer You Can Trust

Your attorney should help you make informed decisions about how best to achieve your specific estate planning goals. Expert estate planning attorney Xue Connelly of Friedman, Grimes, Meinken & Leischner PLLC, is ready to help you get a jump on your estate planning process this year. For expert advice and personalized care, contact Xue Connelly today.

Whether you are facing a family law, protective order, estate planning, bankruptcy and/or criminal-law-related issue, Friedman, Grimes, Meinken & Leischner PLLC is here for you during challenging times.

About the Author

This is a photo of Xue Connelly. She is a bankruptcy and estate attorney at Old Town Lawyers.

Xue Connelly

Xue Connelly is an attorney at Friedman, Grimes, Meinken & Leischner PLLC, concentrating on planning and controversy matters involving estates and trusts and bankruptcy. Ms. Connelly has been named a 2023 Virginia Legal Elite, a Super Lawyer “Rising Star” in Northern Virginia and Washington D.C., and a 2023 Best Lawyer “Ones to Watch” by U.S. News & World Report.