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The importance of choosing a guardian for your child

It is a hard topic, but parents need to think about what happens to their child or children in the event they both pass before the child or children turn 18.

Naming a guardian of your child or children in your Estate Plan while you are alive places control in your hands, and prevents future conflict, regarding this critical issue.

While choosing a guardian is certainly based on many factors, ultimately it is a decision that must be based on what is best for the child or children.

Role of the guardian

According to the New York State Unified Court System, a guardian has the same legal power as a parent.

Although death is a common reason a guardian steps in to raise the child, it is not the only one.

Parents can also name a guardian in the event, or if there is the potential, that they will become  too ill, either physically or mentally, to take care of their own child or children.

Factors to consider when choosing a guardian

Forbes acknowledges that naming a guardian is not easy, and that no one is going to be a perfect fit.

However, a good place to start is by considering values, such as religious and moral, that you as a parent believe are important as a caretaker.

Some parents may want to focus on education, while others value experiences.

In the end, most parents believe that the guardian should share the same values and goals that they themselves hold.

Accordingly, you should consider family members, as well as friends.

Once you have a list of candidates, some other factors to consider of each one include:

  • Location
  • Financial, physical, and emotional health
  • Family structure
  • Love and affection towards the child

Foremost, parents should always make sure the person they choose wants to accept the role.

It also makes sense to choose a backup in the event something happens to the first choice.

If you need to name a guardian for your child or children as part of your Estate Planning, or otherwise, contact Bashian P.C.

 

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