When it comes to your children, you can never be too prepared or plan too far in advance for their future. That same principle applies to estate planning. Preparing for your minor children’s care in the event of your death is a necessary part of being a great parent. One way to ensure your children are well taken care of after you are gone is to create a comprehensive Florida estate plan. This plan goes further than establishing legal authority over who will handle your affairs and provides you an outlet to leave a legacy for your children.
We want to share with you some key considerations to help you create an estate plan that goes beyond distributing your assets through a last will and testament.
1. Reevaluate whether your chosen guardian is still the best fit for the job.
Choosing a guardian to care for your minor children after you are gone can be a challenging task. It is important to consider whether the person you appoint shares similar values to you and respects your parenting goals. Inevitably, as times goes on, your circumstances and beliefs may change or evolve. Check in often with your selected guardian to ensure you remain comfortable with your choice. An estate plan provides flexibility to update your choice as you see fit.
2. Be sure that you and your spouse agree on your choice of guardian.
As with most decisions, it is crucial that both you and your spouse agree on the selected guardian. An estate plan provides more room for you to outline your wishes for your children’s care. By providing detailed instructions, you may also help avoid a situation where one spouse is the “winner” of an argument concerning who to designate as guardian. Utilize the advice of your trusted estate planning attorney to ensure you are maximizing the planning options available to you.
3. Be confident that your chosen guardian is financially able to take on the role.
Raising children takes a large financial commitment. By creating a comprehensive Florida estate plan, you can financially prepare for your children’s future. An estate plan allows you to set up trusts for your children. You have the power to decide at what age your children may receive access to the trust funds. While in an ideal world, your chosen guardian will be financially capable of providing for your children, you may also choose to consider assisting the guardian with personal expenses, such as a house or car payment while your minor children are still in his or her care.
We understand this is just the start of a conversation you may wish to have with your spouse concerning the legacy you wish to leave for your children. When you are ready to further discuss your estate planning needs, do not hesitate to contact our office. We are the estate planning attorneys here to help you.