Looking After Your Children - Guardianship

Uncategorized Sep 30, 2017

If you have young children and would like to make provision for their guardianship, then you can do this in your Will.

Of course, we hope that your children won't need to be catered for and will be well over the age of maturity when you pass away but it's always good to make provisions just in case.

Firstly, if you are a married couple with children you have had together, then the remaining blood parent would automatically continue to care for the children.

The problems start when we look at couples, or a single parent, who has children but is not married, or living with the children's other parent.

If the parent dies, leaving the children with a partner, who is not their blood parent, then it could be that the natural parent may have a potential claim on the children as they are their blood relatives.

This might not be what the deceased wanted, as the children may have lived with the deceased and his partner for some time. Therefore in the Will you can specify who you want to care for your children in the event of your death.

This could be your partner, (ie step parent to the children), grand parents, aunts and uncles or a friend. In your Will you can also specify why this guardian has been chosen over a natural parent and why you would not want the natural parent to care for the children.

It should be noted, that in such cases, social services would almost certainly be involved and the best interests and wishes of the children would be taken into account.

For example, the natural remaining parent may be unsuitable for a number of reasons, and if the children have lived with the step parent for a number of years and are settled there, it's likely that that's where they would stay.

In your Will you can also allocate a specific sum of money to be used for the care of your children by the guardians if required.

There are a number of options you might like to consider, and it's always advisable to seek professional help when making your Will to accommodate such matters.

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