Five Tips For Selecting a Guardian For Your Minor Child
Parents worry about everything when it comes to their children. Feeding them the best foods, keeping them safe and healthy, providing them with tools to help them learn and develop. BUT, what most parents forget is naming a guardian for their minor children.
As a parent, the most important thing you can do today for your child is make sure that you have selected the right person to care for him or her if you are incapacitated or no longer living. If you do not select a guardian, the courts will decide for you. A random judge who has never met you or the guardian will decide what is best for your child. This process can be expensive, lengthy and time consuming.
The guardian you choose will take care of your child and make decisions regarding his or her care, health, education, and general well-being. Here are a few tips on selecting a guardian:
- Think in terms of the next 3-7 years.
Parents often times have a difficult time choosing a guardian because they are focused on the distant future. Rather, you should focus on the immediate future and select someone who you would want to care for their minor children in next 3 to 7 years.
- Your selection is not permanent.
Your selection is not set in stone. If you change your mind, you can easily change your guardianship designations.
- Name alternates.
Always name at least 2 alternate guardians in case the one you name is unable to do the job.
- Keep practical details in mind.
When selecting a guardian consider geography, religion, education, and parenting style. You may want an aunt to take care of your children, but the fact that she lives in another state might be something to take into consideration because this means your children will be uprooted from their community and have to move to a new state.
- Coordinate child’s finances.
Do you want the guardian you name to be in charge of your child’s finances as well? Often times, the person that cares for your children may not be the same person you want to name as the person that controls your child’s money. Regardless, this question should be addressed when planning your estate.