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Tips for selecting a guardian for your children, P.1

| Jan 5, 2012 | Estate Planning |

In our last couple of posts, we have been focusing on the power of Georgia probate courts to appoint guardians and conservators for adults and minors who need such supervision. We have also noted the importance of using your will as an opportunity to appoint guardians for your children.

But deciding who will take care of your children if you die unexpectedly can be a difficult decision, particularly if they disagree with their spouse on a selection. Some find it so difficult that they are never able to make a decision and eventually just let the issue slide by without taking any action at all.

Of course, selecting a trustworthy person really is the best course of action, even if they aren’t ideal in every way. The alternative is to let a probate court do it for you. Allowing that to happen could result in a selection you would not approve. There may also be more than one applicant for the job, which could create family friction, or there may be no one that steps forward.

One thing to consider when making a selection is that you are not confined to family members. Some people name close friends, neighbors or other trusted individuals. Selecting grandparents can also be a viable option, depending on their age. Caution should be used in selecting an older child, however, as they may not be ready for the responsibility.

One thing our discussion about guardians and conservators should have raised is that the functions of raising kids and handling their money do not necessarily have to go together. Perhaps you have an individual in mind who would be great at raising your kids but not so great at handling their money. You are perfectly free to select different people for those jobs.

In our next post, we’ll continue with this topic.

Source: MSN Money, “Who will take care of your kids if you die?,” Liz Pulliam Weston, no publication date provided.

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