The last few posts have addressed the issue of what happens to your property and money when you die, but what about what would happen to your children?
One of the most important questions to address is what would happen to your children if you and your spouse die while they are still minors? It’s extremely important to not leave that decision to the state. A judge will decide what he/she thinks is in the best interest of the children, but that may very well not go along with what you would have wished. A judge will try to find any living relatives, but that doesn’t always mean that the children will remain together in the same household. If step-parents are involved, that often means splitting up where the children will live.
Additionally, if you don’t have a will, there will be no one (aside from the state) to direct where life insurance payouts will go. It will be left to the state to assume who will get what benefits and how they should be split. Unless you have a relative that you trust to divide it, it’s better to place money into a trust. In fact, there have been many cases when money wasn’t used like it was supposed to be used. Establishing a trust will help to prevent that.
Establishing a plan for your money is important, but establishing a plan for who will help to take care of your children is much, much more important. This should not serve as legal advice, but if you’d like to have a FREE 15 minute consultation regarding your estate, please fill out the information in the form on the side of this page.
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