Naming Your Children’s Guardian and Property Manager in Your Will

For someone who has minor children, one of the most important things he or she can do is name a guardian for those children in his or her will. It’s not something many people like to think about, but it’s essential for peace of mind should the unthinkable happen. The following are some things to keep in mind when it comes to naming a guardian and property manager in your will.

Do You Need Both a Physical and a Property Guardian?

In many cases, parents will name both a physical guardian and a property guardian for their children. It could be the same person, or it could be two different people. For example, if the parents feel that an aunt could best take care of the children’s physical and emotional needs, they may name her as the physical guardian. Perhaps that aunt isn’t very great with money, so the parents would name a grandparent or family friend as the property guardian. That property guardian would manage anything the child inherited until the child reached the age of 18.

The physical guardian and property guardian can be the same person if that’s what the parents feel is in the child’s best interest. This sometimes simplifies a situation, allowing the person who is physically and emotionally caring for the child the resources he or she needs to do so.

Are There Other Ways to Leave Property for a Child?

There are some other ways you can leave property for your child, rather than just naming a guardian in your will. During life, you can set up a trust for each of your children. In your will, you would name a person to be the trustee. This person will take charge of the money you leave for your children until the child meets the requirements you set forth. For example, you may indicate in your will that the trustee should manage the property until the child turns eighteen or until the child is accepted into college.

Another way to leave an inheritance to a child is with a pot trust. This is typically used for families with multiple small children, as they don’t all have the same needs as each other. There would only be one trust for the entire family, rather than a trust for each child. The trustee would use the funds in the trust as he or she sees fit until the youngest child reaches the age of eighteen. The remainder would typically be split equally among the children at that point.

Contacting a Wills Lawyer

Naming a physical guardian and property manager for your children is an important step in creating a will. Contact a living will lawyer, like a living will lawyer in Philadelphia, PA, today for help in getting started.

Thanks to Klenk Law for their insight into how to prepare your belongings for your child in case anything should happen to you.

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