Parents – if something were to happen to you, have you done all that you can to ensure that your children are legally protected? Most parents of young children have not done anything at all, or if they have, the planning is often incomplete or outdated.
Every parent of a minor child should have:
1. Last Will and Testament with a guardian named for the custody and care of the children, and a trustee to take care of your assets for the benefit of the child. This can be the same person, but doesn’t have to be. At least one backup should be named as well. Trust provisions should be included in the will since minor children cannot legally manage or control property.
2. Sufficient Life Insurance to provide for your children until such time as they can support themselves.
3. Beneficiary Designations for Life Insurance and Retirement Accountsthat name the trustee of the trust under your will, not the children themselves.
4. Authorization to Consent to Health Care for Minor form. If you ever travel without your children, this form allows you to name another adult to consent to emergency care that might be necessary.
Planning for the protection of your children in the event you are longer around is too important to ignore, and is not a "do-it-yourself" project. See an estate planning attorney, who can assist you in preparing a secure future for your children, no matter what their age.