Maintaining the interest and well-being of Children, the Guardian
If you have children, or plan on having children your familiar with the importance of planning ahead. Should something happen to you or the children's other parent, it is essential to be prepared ahead of time in order to ensure that they are taken care of. Remember that the second parent is always the first automatic legal guardian of the children. Electing a guardian for them in case you are both unavailable will provide them with stability as they transition into a difficult period of life.
Guardianship and Custody of Children
The law provides the right to appoint someone to have custody of your minor children in your Will. This will give the guardian the right to choose where the child should live, what school the child should go to and how to proceed with their medical treatments. The guardian of your children will also be the person you elect to manage the assets of your children if both you and your spouse pass away. The law provides that the guardian of the child’s property can invest the child’s money and decide how it should be used for the benefit of the child.
Not naming guardians can result in unfortunate circumstances for the children if relatives, friends or immediate family start to argue about the best way to care for the children or who should care for the children. This can cause problems for the children and for the family, which is why you should make your wishes clear in your Will.
Who Should I Choose?
Choosing a guardian for your children can be a daunting task. So, we put together a list of things to consider that can make your decision a little bit easier to make.
- They must be age of majority (unless in British Colombia then they must be 16)
- Choose someone you trust completely and entirely.
- They must be mentally competent and understand the consequences of their actions.
- Speak with your partner about potential options and why you would choose one person over another.
- Consider family members or friends with similar values as you.
- Discuss it with the other parent and make sure you are both on the same page and name the same person as a guardian in both your Wills.
If you find yourself having a hard time choosing for whatever reason don’t feel despair, this is a common issue for many people. Remember that even though it’s a personal decision, if a decision is not made the courts can appoint someone on your behalf.
Here are some things to consider when choosing a guardian for your children:
1. Shared Values and Beliefs
When choosing a guardian, it's important to select someone who shares your values and beliefs, especially when it comes to parenting. You will want to consider how they discipline their children, their approach to education, and their religious beliefs, if any.
2. Emotional Stability
Any children will be going through a difficult time if they lose both parents, so you must choose someone who can provide emotional stability and support during this time. You'll want to select someone who is nurturing and can provide a stable and loving environment for your children.
3. Age and Health
While it's important to choose someone you trust and who shares your values, it is also important to consider their age and health. You'll want to select someone likely to be around to care for your children until they become adults. This may mean choosing someone who is younger than you are, or someone who is in good health and has a good chance of living a long life.
4. Location and Lifestyle
You'll also want to consider the location and lifestyle of the person you choose as a guardian. Ideally, you will want someone who lives near you and your children, so they can continue to attend the same school and maintain their social network. You will also want to consider their lifestyle and make sure that it is compatible with your children's needs and routines.
5. Willingness to Serve
Finally, you will want to choose someone willing to serve as a guardian. It is a big responsibility, and you'll want to make sure that they are up for the task. Before naming someone in your Will, make sure to discuss your wishes with them and get their approval.
In conclusion, choosing a guardian for your children in your Will is a difficult but essential decision. You may want to select someone who shares your values and beliefs, can provide emotional stability, is likely to be around until your children become adults, lives near you, and is willing to serve. It's also important to review your choice of guardian periodically, especially if circumstances change. With careful consideration, you can make the best choice for your children's future.
It’s always in the best interest of the children to make a decision ahead of time. Remember that your Will is a document that can be changed accordingly in the future to reflect your wishes. So if you change your mind about someone or something you can amend it accordingly at our platform at a later stage for no additional cost.