Are guardians important for parents?

On Behalf of | Jul 11, 2022 | Estate Planning |

In a recent post on this blog, we discussed the importance of guardianship for vulnerable adults. In this post, we will focus on why guardians are so important for young children, and why Williamsville, New York, parents need to make guardianship a part of their estate plans.

A reminder of what a guardian does

Before we move on to the need for a guardian, a reminder of what a guardian does is important. Essentially, if you and your co-parent pass, the guardian steps in and takes on legal responsibility for your children. They make all of the same parental decisions, like schooling, doctors, etc.

Why you need a guardianship designation

Some Williamsville, New York, parents assume that someone in their family will take over care of their children if they should unexpectedly die before their children are adults. This is not guaranteed to happen. In some cases, such a scenario results in a dispute over guardianship between family members.

If you die without naming a guardian, the fate of your child could be left to a randomly assigned family court judge, and possibly the foster care system.

How to choose a guardian

Choosing potential guardians for your children is a deeply personal act. Pick guardians that already love your children and that your children love as well. This is the most important aspect because your children will be in mourning. It is important not to make this time even worse. Next, try to find guardians that align with your parental ideology and religious views. Speak to all your potential guardians about the possibility.

Remember, no guardian designation can be enforced by the court unless the guardian actually accepts the responsibility. This is why you need to have, at least, one backup guardian, but preferably a few more. Finally, make sure the guardians know their level on the list because you do not want a guardianship fight.