Becoming a parent can be an eye-opening experience in many ways. It provides a sometimes new perspective on the bonds of unconditional love. That joy also comes with the greatest responsibility anyone can take on in their lifetime, the health, well-being, and nurturing of a child.
If the notion of you not being there to love and support your child gives you pause, that’s a common anxiety parents share. It’s also one that keeps more than a few parents awake at night. If you want to rest easier knowing a trusted family member or loved one will care for your child in the event you cannot, it’s crucial to have a guardian in place. These are things parents need to know about the importance of guardianship.
A Guardian Can Protect Your Child’s Future
By designating a guardian through legally-binding documents, you are ensuring someone you know and trust will be ready to help your child into adulthood. Your guardian can step in on a short-term basis if you become incapacitated or permanently if you should pass prematurely. Having a guardian in waiting prevents the court from appointing someone who does necessarily share your worldview and prevents a total stranger from raising your child.
Parents routinely designate a grandparent, sibling, or another family member. There may be opportunities to identify more than one person in case your primary choice is unable to fulfill the obligation. This person or people are handed decision-making authority over health, education, religious affiliation, and many other important issues. You may outline in your estate plan how you would prefer specific pivotal life issues are handled. Picking the right person to carry on a legacy of love ranks among the greatest acts of kindness you can bestow today.
A Guardian Can Continue Teaching Values You Hold Dear
Selecting the best candidate requires thoughtful consideration. It’s worthwhile to discuss the salient values you and other family members hold dear. This does not necessarily mean that you should follow all of the advice of parents, grandparents, siblings, or other loved ones. But gathering input from those around you tends to highlight what truly matters in your child’s life, beyond financial security. These are common questions parents consider when choosing a guardian.
- What personality traits will make a difference in my child’s life?
- What type of religious affiliation do I want for my child?
- What educational values should the guardian possess?
- What political views matter in my child’s upbringing?
- What parenting skills do I value the most?
- What type of home life do I want for my child?
- Am I okay with someone who smokes or drinks?
- Should the guardian be in stable marriage or single?
It’s no secret that we are all flawed people in some way. But by answering these and other questions about your core values, a clear picture emerges about who possesses the majority of them. By selecting a like-minded guardian, you can ensure your child receives the best possible moral upbringing.
A Guardian Enhances Financial Stability For Your Child
When crafting a determined estate plan, financial stability remains a core concern. In many cases, parents designate a trustee to manage assets and disburse resources to support the child. It’s imperative that you select a guardian and trustee who can work together to harmoniously deliver financial support. That relationship is critical to the health and well-being of your child.
In the absence of enough resources to support your child into adulthood, it may fall on the guardian to make up the difference. Asking a loved one to take on both the caregiving and financial responsibilities is quite significant. But without the right person in place, your child could become a ward of the court.
Protect Your Child’s Future By Contacting An Attorney To Designate A Guardian Today
If you have not yet created a viable estate plan that includes a guardian, your child’s future remains at risk. When parents fail to craft legally secure documents that designate a caregiver, you are leaving that decision to a judge who may not share your worldview. If you are a parent without a legal guardian appointed or would like to make changes to an existing plan, contact Atlanta Wills + Trusts Law Group by Refeca Law LLC.