As parents, you want to protect your children and make sure they have the life they deserve at any cost. Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to raise them into the adults you hope they’ll become. If you pass away unexpectedly, you’ll need to appoint someone to care for your child and raise them in your stead.
At L. Jennings Law Firm, our estate planning team is here to help you navigate the legal side of guardianship appointments in Little Rock and the surrounding area. However, it’s still up to you to determine who you want to name as a guardian and establish that guardianship through the proper channels. These are the steps you’ll need to follow.
Discuss Your Options with Your Spouse
Choosing a guardian for your child isn’t a decision you should make on your own. Discuss your options with your spouse and identify the people you trust to raise your children if you’re unable to do so. Family members and close friends are great choices, but it all comes down to who you believe shares your values and can provide your child with the love, care, attention, and upbringing that you want them to have.
Try to identify at least two potential guardians for your child. Situations can change, and individuals that originally agreed to become a guardian may not be able to provide for your child, and naming a backup guardian will ensure that your child’s needs are met if you pass away.
Ask Your Chosen Guardians
Just because you believe someone would make the perfect guardian for your child doesn’t mean they’ll want the responsibility. Rather than naming someone and informing them of your decision, ask each person you’re considering if they’d be willing to look after your child if you pass away. Make sure they’re willing to uphold the values you want your child raised with. If anyone is unsure or you’re not confident in their ability to raise your child after speaking with them, choose a different guardian.
Establish a Will
Your will is the best way to convey your final wishes for your estate, your assets, and your child’s future. If you don’t already have a will in place, you’ll want to create one as soon as possible. The team at L. Jennings Law Firm can help you draft a will and address all of your key concerns. In your will, you’ll want to name the guardians of your child should you pass away. This will tell the court who should look after your child and makes it easier to uphold your final wishes.
If you already have a will, you’ll want to update it to reflect your choice of guardian for your child. Should you find a better-suited guardian in the future or have another child, update your will as soon as possible to reflect those changes.
Establishing Guardianship in Your Will Is a Must
Creating a will is a simple way to ensure that your final wishes are honored and your child is properly cared for if you pass away. The team at L. Jennings Law Firm is here to help whether you need to write an entirely new will or want to update an existing one to reflect a new guardianship appointment. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.