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The Hardest Question: Selecting A Guardian For Your Children
One of the reasons people delay estate planning is because they must face mortality. They will also have to answer who will be responsible for raising their children if something happens to them. At the Family First Firm, we build custom estate plans that protect you, your family, and your assets. When you tell us who you want to nominate as a guardian, we will craft the plan you can rely on. However, some people may be considering this question for the first time—and they may ask how to choose a guardian.
When we receive this question, we offer the following advice: pick the person who would raise them as you would. Though this may seem like an obvious answer, it may not be a common one. Why? Because a lot of people may not use that as the primary factor when choosing a guardian.
For example, you may have the perfect person in mind. This is someone who knows you, your values, and has a relationship with your children. Unfortunately, they don’t have a lot of money. Some people may tell you to choose a guardian based on whether they can financially handle the responsibility.
Money Shouldn’t Be a Factor
We explain that money should not factor into your considerations. Upon hearing that, you may push back and ask how someone can raise your children if they cannot afford it. It is your job to have enough money to ensure someone else can raise your children if something happens to you. People typically accomplish this through life insurance, mutual funds, investments, and savings.
If you are concerned about your child not having enough money, tell your estate planning attorney. By telling your lawyer what you need out of your plan, they can provide you with various options. For instance, you can establish a trust for the child and name someone such as the guardian to be the trustee. You may also opt for choosing a custodian to handle the child's financial needs while allowing the previously-mentioned guardian to be responsible for the well-being of the child.
Family First Firm
When choosing a guardian, select the person you want to raise your children. If there are logistical or financial concerns, tell them to an estate planning attorney at the Family First Firm. We have a multitude of documents that we can choose from—and we choose each one based on your needs. Contact us to schedule a consultation with our estate planning attorneys.