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PLANNING FOR YOUR CHILDREN

HAVING A WILL ALONE SIMPLY DOES NOT ENSURE THE CARE OF YOUR KIDS IF THE UNTHINKABLE HAPPENS TO YOU

If you are a parent of minor children who are counting on you, your estate plan must begin with ensuring your children would always be taken care of by the people you want, in the way you want, no matter what happens.

One of our areas of greatest expertise is in planning for the well-being and care of the children you love – all the way from newborn to age of majority, and all the way through adulthood if your child has a special need.

WITHOUT PROPER PLANNING, HERE’S WHAT COULD HAPPEN

  • Your children could be placed into the care of strangers while the authorities figure out what to do (yes, even if you have a will in place and even if you have a living trust). It’s true that this would likely only be temporary, but trust us: you never want your children in the arms of strangers, not even for a minute.
  • Your children could be put into the custody and care of someone you would never want, like that one family member who has good intentions but who you would never want raising your kids.
  • A judge who doesn’t know you or your family will decide who will raise your kids, even if it is the last person you would ever want.
  • Your family could get into a long drawn-out custody fight or there could be a challenge to the guardians you have designated.
  • Up to 5% of the value of your assets could be lost to court costs and other unnecessary fees through the probate process, a court process that can tie up your assets for years and deprive your kids of the resources they need to live comfortably.
  • When your kids turn age 18, they get a check for whatever assets are left, no matter how immature they might be or what financial lessons they have not had a chance to learn yet.
  • Unscrupulous people out there find out when 18-year olds are getting that inheritance check by searching the public court records.
  • Unfortunately, the vast majority of estate planning attorneys do not address these issues and do not plan from a parent’s perspective.

Yes, these things scare us too.

That’s why we offer plans for these contingencies with every estate plan we do for families with young children.

WHAT’S IN THE PLAN?

Your plan will include a set of instructions, legal documents and an emergency wallet card – all of which you need to have if you have kids at home who count on you for their well-being and care.

If you are in an accident, your plan will reduce the risk that your children will be taken into the custody of Department of Children and Families, strangers or the care of anyone you would not want simply because the authorities don’t have clear instructions from you.

And your plan will ensure your children are raised by people you choose, not someone chosen by a judge who doesn’t know you.  Click here to get started.

PLANNING FOR YOUR CHILDREN

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Get your hands on our comprehensive estate planning checklist that covers all the essential steps you need to take to protect your assets and ensure your wishes are carried out.