Drafting a will gives you control over your assets after your death. You can provide an inheritance for family members or even leave certain property for a charitable cause. When you have a baby, a will could be a means of providing financial support for your child if anything happens to you.
However, many parents would prefer to protect such assets in a trust rather than leaving a large inheritance to a minor child, which might then end up in the control of a guardian. The real reason that new parents will require a will is not to leave property for their child but rather instead to name a guardian to fulfill a parental role if anything were to happen to them.
Choosing the right guardian makes all the difference
A child who has recently lost a parent is vulnerable, especially if they are quite young. Children who don’t have a guardian to step into a parental role might find themselves in state facilities or placed in a foster home.
Unfortunately, such arrangements sometimes lead to abuse or neglect. Beyond which, it will be very distressing and destabilizing for a child first to lose a loved one and then to end up living with strangers.
When you choose a guardian for your child, you help ensure they will have a stable family life even if you are not the one to provide that home for them. The ability to name a guardian and even an alternate is perhaps the most important reason that new parents and those expecting a baby need to create a will.
Don’t leave your child’s needs to chance
You may have a wonderful family with several close siblings or cousins, but that doesn’t mean that the people who love you will immediately step up for your child if something happens to you. People going through grief can be short-sighted and selfish. Taking the time to address guardianship now and to talk about it with the people whom you would trust with your child will help guarantee your child has appropriate support if anything happens to you.
Drafting a will and creating other estate planning documents will help protect you and your child.