Monday, July 2, 2018

Series: Estate Plannings Hardest Questions

Estate Plannings Hardest Questions

Two of Six -- Who to Name as Guardian of Minor Children
By Melinda Gustafson Gervasi

Contemporary parenting is full of reminders that some children may face a future without both parents at his or her side.  From Cinderella to Harry Potter, children's books and movies regularly set an orphan out on a life adventure, weaving an exciting story with plenty of milestones. 

While it may be a common writing technique, the idea of orphans can leave many a parent feeling vulnerable -- who would raise our (my) child(ren) if we/I die?  It's a question that, depending on your emotional fortitude, can feel like a punch to the stomach.  But again, in my opinion it is one a parent should face, decide, and put in a legally binding format (laws differ state to state, and day to day, please consult with an attorney for up-to-date advice relevant to your state of residence).  Without answering this question yourself, it may lead to a dispute about who a child should grow up with.  After having lost one or both parents, does a child really need to become the center of a court case?

As a parent and an estate planner, it's my opinion that no one person can replace you.  Given that, aim for who is the best fit.  Points I personally take into consideration are who aligns the most with our family on topics of:

  • religion,
  • education,
  • financial management, and
  • daily life (urban vs. rural, dual income vs. one parent at home, etc.).
This may be the hardest question in the estate planning world.  Face it, update it as needed, and relax knowing it is taken care of, and hopefully never needed.  Oh, and you may want to avoid children's books and movies that start off with an orphan -- I personally limit my exposure as much as possible, life is harsh enough without those added thoughts bouncing around in my mind when I try to fall asleep.

Smidge and Rooster joined us for a Wedding Anniversary at Lilianna's earlier this summer.  We were helping them develop finer dining experiences.  They loved it more than Culver's.....we created some expensive dining taste with these two.

Thanks for reading, and remember a blog is not a lawyer.  Please consult an attorney in your state of residence for advice specific to your situation.