A big part of your responsibility as a parent is ensuring that your child is protected even in the case of unforseen events.
If you think you’re too young for estate planning, think again.
As soon as you have a child, the feeling of responsibility is overwhelming. There is so much to plan and prepare for and we realize that estate planning doesn’t usually make that list. However, a big part of your responsibility as a parent is to ensure that your child’s or children’s lives have a clear and well thought out path, even in the case of an unforeseen event.
The benefits of estate planning for the young parent are a lot more poignant than for others. Younger children may have to live with decisions made for them for many years to come. The scenario in which a child’s fate is left to be decided by the courts should be avoided at all costs.
In the unlikely event that you and your partner are no longer here and there is no planning in place, the process to decide critical issues for your children is daunting. There may be conflict among family members regarding the care of the children; there will be lengthy and expensive court proceedings. There may be inappropriate individuals appointed by the court to make decisions for your children that you never would want to do so. To add to this unfortunate situation is the idea that your children will be right in the middle of the turmoil, feeling unsettled at a time when security and peace should be the top priority.
A Typical Scenario
It’s unfortunately rare when a young couple, in their 30’s, come in for an estate planning consultation. After all, at that age we think we’ll live forever.
When they come in, it’s usually because they are traveling together, without their children, and want to put a plan in place. We see it all the time.
This event of traveling together sparks the need and desire to plan ahead….just in case. This is the most obvious incentive to put their wishes in writing, but life is so unpredictable that it shouldn’t be the only incentive.