Every parent needs a comprehensive estate plan that includes guardianship appointments for their children. This ensures that your children remain safe and cared for in the event of the unexpected. The person you name as your child’s guardian plays an important role in their lives, making this a critical decision.
There are a few important factors to consider as you make that choice.
If you appoint a guardian with a different value system, your child may find themselves in not only unfamiliar surroundings but a completely different environment. Choose someone who shares your values and belief systems so that your child’s core support structure stays consistent for their emotional and moral development.
The guardian you name should have a stable, secure environment for your child. This does not just mean owning their own home. Look for someone with financial responsibility as well. Studies show that the average cost of raising a child from birth to age 18 is nearly $300,000. That means you need a guardian you trust to manage your child’s inheritance responsibly and provide for them appropriately.
Health and age
Many parents automatically consider grandparents as default guardians for their minor children. This is not always the best approach. Remember that your parents are older and may face health issues that make raising another child at this stage of life extremely difficult. Consider the age and health of any guardian before you make that selection.
The choice of guardian shapes your child’s future if something should happen to you. Make sure you have an open conversation with any potential guardian as you consider these factors. That way, you can be sure that you choose the right person for your child.