Choosing a Guardian for Your Children

There’s more to estate planning than designating who gets what assets. It’s also about selecting the appropriate guardian for your minor children. While it’s tough to think about the unthinkable, it’s necessary. If you die unexpectedly, you want to ensure that the right person will be taking care of your children. Estate planning lawyers share some tips for choosing a guardian for your children.

Consider Age and Health Status

While your parents might make excellent guardians for your children, it’s important to take their age and health status into account. If your parents are getting up their in age and have multiple health problems, they probably won’t be able to handle raising your kids. It’s a better option to choose a trusted relative or friend who is younger and in fairly good health.

Take Values Into Account

When deciding on a guardian for your children, keep values in mind. Ideally, you’ll want to pick a guardian who shares your values. For example, if you’re a religious person and want to take your kids to church, it might not be best to choose a guardian who doesn’t believe in God. 

Don’t Dismiss a Potential Guardian’s Financial Situation

It’s no secret that raising children is expensive. Everything from clothes and food to education and medical bills gets pricey. That’s why it’s important to choose a guardian who has a stable job and good at managing money. If the guardian is financially stable, he or she will be able to tend to your kids’ needs.

Consider Parenting Skills

The guardian you’re thinking about choosing could be the nicest person in the world. However, if he or she doesn’t have solid parenting skills, he or she might not be the best person for the role. If the potential guardian has kids, consider how he or she raises them. Does this person successfully discipline them when they’ve misbehaved? Does he or she teach kids about responsibility? These are just some questions you should ask yourself before choosing a guardian.

Ask the Potential Guardian for Permission

Just because you believe someone will make a great guardian, doesn’t mean he or she is up for the task. For example, if the guardian you’re thinking about appointing works long hours, he or she might not have enough time to look after your children. That’s why it’s important to discuss this matter with the guardian you want to appoint. Make sure that this person actually wants to be a guardian before you appoint him or her.

Selecting a guardian for your children isn’t an easy task. However, if you follow these tips, it should make the process a little easier. If you have further questions about estate planning, talk to an estate planning lawyer in Palatine, IL.

Thanks to Bott & Associates, Ltd. for their insight into estate planning and choosing a guardian.