As a new parent, you want to spend your time with your child, not filling forms in an attorney’s office. Yet, making time to do this is essential to safeguarding your child’s future. It only takes one freak accident for you and your spouse to leave your child parentless. Naming a guardian for your child helps you know they will be cared for should something happen to you.
What should I look for in a guardian?
- Financial stability: However great someone is with kids, if they struggle to meet the rent each month, they might not be able to provide stability for your child. You should also consider how you can leave money to help with the finances.
- Personal stability: Your sister may be unable to have kids of her own. She may have a well-paid career and love children. Yet, if she tends to attract abusive partners, this may preclude her from your options.
- Values: How do you want your child to grow up? What is most important to you? Remember, values are highly personal. You are unlikely to find a perfect match on everything.
- Age: Your parents might seem the ideal choice to act as guardians. After all, most grandparents dote on their grandchildren. However, consider the effects of your child losing not one but two sets of parents. If your parents are elderly, they may not be up to the task of raising a child for the next 18 years. Or they may not live long enough to do so.
What happens if I don’t name a guardian?
If you do not name a guardian, then a court will choose one should the need arise. By doing it yourself, you give your child a better chance of growing up in the way you would like.