Wills: How do I choose a guardian for my kids?

If you are making or updating your Will and you’re a parent, one of the difficult questions you need to grapple with is, “how do I choose a guardian for my kids?” The truth is, this is a complex decision and not one you should make lightly. To help you choose the right guardian in your Will, we have put together some helpful questions you should ask yourself.

Firstly, why do I need to make this decision?

Before we get into, “how do I choose a guardian for my kids?”, let’s cover off on WHY you need to choose a guardian for your kids. One of the critical mistakes you can make as a parent is assuming that in the event you pass away, your kids will go to their closest family member.

This is not always the case.

The truth is, if you don’t name a guardian in your Will, the decision will ultimately rest with a judge in a court of law. Anyone can put forward a case for guardianship and while a dispute may still occur even if you do pen your wishes in a Will, what you want will be a key consideration.

How do I choose a guardian for my kids?

When making this choice, some of us already have an idea about who we want to take on this role, should they be required. Others? Have no idea.

Wherever you stand, you must give this decision a lot of thought and weigh up all of the considerations. To help, ask yourself the following questions.

What’s important to my kids and me?

Consider your values and what’s important to you. Think about things such as education, religion, the arts, sport, a nurturing personality, adventure and culture. Consider your kids, their personalities and the traits in a guardian you think they need.

What practicalities do I need to consider?

Practical things to consider when deciding on a prospective guardian for your kids include financial security, housing and location. Consider where people are at in terms of life stages. Are they financially secure? Do they have a home and access to facilities that would cater to the needs of your kids? Do they live nearby – do they need to?

Think about the impact being a guardian would have on people – not just on your kids.

Does the person want to be a guardian?

Before you nominate someone to be a guardian of your kids in your Will, consider whether or not they want to be. Making this decision is not easy for anyone involved. So it’s essential to have an honest and frank conversation with a prospective guardian or couple before locking anything in legally.

Do you need some legal help making or updating your Will? Contact our team today.

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