Estate planning involves many things, from writing a will to creating trusts to making medical decisions for your own future. Many people think that this is something that only the elderly do, or perhaps an area of law that is most often addressed by retirees.
However, it is often wise for younger people to do their estate planning, even though they may feel that they’re too young to really worry about it yet. This is especially true for young parents, as they may need to pick a guardian for their child. If you’re in this situation, how do you find the right person?
Who best replaces you and your spouse?
A guardian will be used if you and your spouse, or the child’s other parent, have both passed away. The guardian will replace you in that parental role for your minor children, so it’s important to look for someone who:
- Shares your values
- Is willing to take on the responsibility
- Loves and cares for your children
- Has the financial means to care for the kids
- Is young enough to provide this level of care
Many people pick family members, and it often feels most natural for young parents to choose their own parents, who are the grandparents to their children. This may make sense, but you do have to consider your parents’ own age, and it is not always best to choose elderly guardians. Remember that you’re picking someone who will be able to provide this care well into the future, potentially for nearly two decades.
Regardless of who you pick to be your child’s guardian, it’s also important to get everything in order, in a legal sense, so that you know your child will be cared for properly. Be sure you know what steps to take to get your estate plans in order.