As a parent, keeping your child safe and secure is one of the top priorities. Naming a guardian to care for the child in the event both parents die should be part of every parent’s estate planning process.
Considering someone else to care for your child is never easy, and many parents put this decision off. However, if you do not name someone, this means the court would make the decision, and this individual may not be your first choice.
Considerations for a guardian
FindLaw discusses some of the important characteristics and qualities to look for in a guardian. One is to find someone who shares your same values and parenting style. This individual should be in good health and at an age where caring for a child would not be difficult. It also helps if the person has financial stability.
Sticking to the same routines and schedules helps children adjust to new things, so it is ideal if the guardian lives nearby or is willing to move so your child can continue going to the same school. It is also better if the child already knows and loves the guardian. Even if you want your child to live with a married couple, just name one of the individuals, as this keeps things simple in the event they divorce.
Considerations for two guardians
U.S. News and World Report states that there are two types of guardians: Of the person and of the estate. A guardian of the estate manages assets or inheritance of the child, while a guardian of the person takes physical care of the child. You can name two separate individuals to fulfill these roles. It is also a good idea to name a backup guardian.