Is appointing a legal guardian enough?
Every parent worries about their child’s future; whether it is the risk they currently face in the playground or their chances in an overly competitive job market. Sometimes these more pressing immediate concerns prevent parents from thinking about the more troublesome “what ifs”.
If you have children under the age of 18, you should consider preparing a Will appointing a legal guardian.
Your chosen legal guardian will be able to step in to care for your children if both of their parents should die before they reach 18. The legal guardian will inherit all the rights, duties and responsibilities you have in relation to your children to raise them into adulthood.
Choosing a legal guardian is often considered to be the most challenging part of making a Will for many parents. At Timbrell Law, we believe that the actual guardianship appointment should be just a small part of the bigger picture. A good solicitor will also ask you to consider the following and work with you to ensure your Will and any accompanying documents achieve your wishes:
1 – Making provision for the legal guardians
When considering whom to appoint as a legal guardian, it also makes sense to discuss the financial strain bringing up your children may have on that person and their resources. A solicitor can work with you to put mechanisms in place to support the legal guardian and as a result your children.
2 – Communicating your wishes for the future
Similarly, you may wish to work with your solicitor to set out your preferences for your children’s future. These might include your views on where they should live, their education, religion, the lifestyle you would like them to enjoy and any desire for them to maintain contact with particular family and friends. While these wishes would not be binding on the legal guardian, they will act as a guide to help them raise your children.
3 – Reviewing your appointment
As your children grow and their interests change, so will the criteria for a potential legal guardian. For this reason, it makes sense to keep your appointment under review.
If you would like to discuss preparing a Will and the broader estate planning involved in appointing legal guardians, please click here for our contact details. We would be pleased to help.
Alternatively, for further information on Wills, please visit the Wills section of our blog.
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