Nearly every Tennessee parent will agree that having a child changes everything. One aspect of life that could change is the desire to engage in some estate planning now that a young life will rely on them for years to come. If something happened to the parents, what would happen to their child?
A top priority is ensuring that someone will take over the care of the child if the parents pass away. Choosing a guardian may seem like an easy task, but it requires a great deal of consideration. Parents need to choose someone who shares their values and will respect their wishes regarding how to raise the child. The individual chosen should also be able to provide the child with a good life.
Parents may also want to consider appointing a trustee to take responsibility for any inheritance left to the child since minors cannot own property. This person can also serve as the guardian, but it is not required. For instance, a parent may believe that one person would be great at raising the child, but not as good with money. Appointing two separate people to serve as guardian and trustee may work best in this instance.
Another document parents may want to consider is a power of attorney. In the event they become incapacitated, this document will allow someone to step in and make decisions on their behalf that will undoubtedly affect the child. As is the case with any other person appointed to handle estate administration tasks, it should be someone the individual creating the document trusts.
Tennessee parents have a lot on their plates with a new addition to the family. However, taking the time to make arrangements for the care of the child should something happen to his or her parents may be worth considering. Estate planning is more for the people left behind, but it could provide parents with the peace of mind that their child will be cared for if they pass away too soon.