Q: How often should a Living Trust be updated and is it sufficient to renew the notarized page?
A: In general, the goal when a living trust is created is that it will be sufficient to adequately address the various circumstances which may exist at the time of the death of the settlors (creators) of the living trust. While that is the ideal, life has its way of dealing us situations which might necessitate that the trust be amended.
First, I would recommend that you review your living trust about every five years. This gives you the opportunity to look at it with fresh eyes. In my experience, when clients have a living trust or estate plan prepared, the documents included in the binder are then set on a shelf and rarely looked at on a regular basis. Every trust usually includes a schedule of assets and you may want to update the schedule to include new assets you have acquired and to delete assets that have been disposed of.
Also, it would be important that you review your living trust if there is a significant change in your personal circumstances, such as death or divorce of an included family member, or if you have a significant change in your personal financial circumstances - say that you have hit that big jackpot on your Vegas trip! A significant change probably would warrant a brief review with estate planning counsel to determine if any changes need to be made to the trust.
Finally, you should keep informed of any changes in the tax laws which might impact any tax-sensitive planning you have made in your trust.
When you ask about whether it is sufficient to renew the notarized page, I am assuming you are asking whether it is necessary to "update" the trust as it exists, without making any changes, by having the acknowledgment of your signatures updated by a notary public. This is not required. If your estate planning attorney recommends changes to your estate plan, a new document, either an amendment or restatement (if the changes are significant), will be prepared.