While it’s certainly true that much of the estate planning process revolves around inheritance and passing your assets on to family members, there is more to it than this. You can also make plans for your healthcare, charitable donations, and most importantly, who should look after your kids if something happens to you.
The person you allocate to take care of your kids is generally referred to as a legal guardian. It’s important to choose someone who can meet the needs of your children in the way that you desire. So, what makes a good guardian?
Someone who shares your values
While you don’t want to control every aspect of your child’s life, you do want to instill some core values. Perhaps you are from a religious background and hope that your children choose the same path? Maybe you are on the opposite side of the spectrum? If this is important to you, then you should consider nominating a guardian who shares these views.
Someone who can provide
Money isn’t everything but it does cost a considerable amount to raise a child. A guardian may have to provide for your child until they reach adulthood, which could be several years or more. Is this financially viable? Is your child going to have access to the education, health care and opportunities that you would like them to? Of course, the amount of love that can be provided is what’s most important, but money certainly comes into play.
Your estate plan allows you to make provisions for your children should something happen to you. Before choosing a legal guardian, it may be best to seek some further guidance and consider your legal options in more detail.