What happens to your children if both you and your spouse die?
Who will take care of them?
How will they be provided for?
These questions are why it is critical for parents of minor children to have a will – it is how you can make these decisions for your family. In your will, you can choose who would raise your children if both you and your spouse are no longer able. Further, in your will, you can decide how your assets would be used to take care of your children, as well as how and when your children would have access to those assets.
If you do not have a will, these decisions will still be made…they will just be made by the courts without any input from you or the familiarity with your family, your friends or your values to know what would be best for your children. Without a will, the courts will decide who will raise your children. In addition, because minors cannot legally own property or manage money themselves, the courts will also appoint a conservator to hold and manage the assets you leave to your children. Those assets must be used for the benefit and in the best interests of your children, but the court-appointed conservator is given the discretion to make those decisions. The conservator, however, will only be in place while the children are still minors, which means that your children will get unfettered access to those assets without any adult supervision or legal protection when they turn 18.
These are difficult questions to consider for sure – no parent wants to think about not being there for their children. As parents, though, it is our job to make sure our children are taken care of, protected and provided for, whether we are there or not. Who is going to decide the answer to these questions for your family — you or the courts?
Call MMPS Law to discuss the process for creating a will. We will consider your unique situation and provide the best options to give you peace of mind and ensure that your family is taken care of in the future.