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Estate planning for parents: 2 things to consider

On Behalf of | Jul 24, 2022 | Estate Planning

Every adult should have an estate plan suited to their needs. When you have children, you also need to consider their needs. 

Here are two areas that parents need to attend to:

Guardianship

You could die before your child reaches 18. You have a legal responsibility for them up to then, so you need to nominate someone else to fulfill that role if you should die and their other parent is unable to. That could be because they are also dead, a court deems them unsuitable, or they cannot be found.

The role is about more than just legal responsibilities, such as telling a doctor what treatment they can give. It encompasses all those things you currently do to raise your child as well as possible. You need someone to provide love, support, standards, food, clothing, and so much more.

You might split responsibilities if you feel the best person to raise your child is not so good with finances. One can look after the kids, and the other can handle the assets you leave, passing them onto the carer as appropriate.

Trusts

Whatever age you pass assets to your children, you need to be sure they have the ability and legal right to manage them. A child who loses a parent might be vulnerable to others trying to get that money. Or they might not value it or realize the supply is limited and blow it within months.

Placing assets in a trust, at least till your child reaches 18 and can legally manage those funds, is wise. Many parents delay payment until the child reaches 21, 25, or some other age deemed old enough to be responsible. Or set it to pay out little by little.

Getting legal help to ensure your estate plan protects your children give you peace of mind to enjoy each day of their childhood and spend less time worrying about the future.

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