Protect Your Children
Your children’s financial stability and their day-to-day care in the event of your death can always be a worry, but with our help, you can put plans in place to give you peace of mind.
Leaving children behind is probably one of the biggest concerns of a parent, but things like having trust funds ready and guardians appointed via your will can ensure that your children are taken care of both in terms of their finances and their care.
We always advise our clients to have a will written as soon as possible when their child is born, and to review it every five years or when another child is born. Doing so is a useful way of keeping your wishes inside the will as up-to-date as possible and makes certain that you cater for all of your children’s needs.
Your children would inevitably be devastated if you were to pass away, thus making it even more important to make preparations just in case. This way, they are not left to deal with anything complicated or stressful at an already-difficult time.
Should you pass away, become critically ill or have an injury which limits your mental capacity, you can still provide your children with financial support for their future by setting up a child trust fund.
As well as this, you should also appoint a legal guardian in order to determine who exactly should care for your children in the event of your death.
Child trust funds
Setting up a child trust fund is a useful way of holding your assets, whether it’s money or property, for the benefit of your beneficiaries (your children in this case). The assets inside the trust can only be used in accordance with your stated requests.
For example, if you request that the trust is only to be released to the beneficiary on their 18th birthday, the trustee (i.e. the person in control of the trust, nominated by you) is only allowed to use the trust fund for that reason.
You can request that the trust serves a specific purpose that benefits the beneficiary – whether it’s to be used for a child’s education, paying towards a house, or just about anything else – which must be adhered to whether you have passed away or not.
On the rare occasion that a trustee does not conform to your wishes set out in the trust, they can be prosecuted.
Child trust funds are reliable and allow you to support your child even in the event of your death, providing your loved ones with financial security and giving yourself peace of mind.
So, you have provided financial support for your children in a trust, what about their day-to-day wellbeing and care?
Appointing a guardian
Having a guardianship order within your will is highly important and allows you to directly influence who will take care of your children in the event of your death.
As a parent, you are likely to be best placed to decide who would be the best person to look after your children if anything should happen to you, which is why nominating a guardian is highly recommended.
The process of appointing a guardian is rather straightforward; you approach the person/people you want to nominate as guardian(s) and discuss the matter with them. If they accept, you are then able to have the guardianship order added to your will, stating your exact wishes concerning your children’s care.
You are able to appoint different types of guardians, which allows you to distribute the responsibility somewhat in order to suit the guardians’ strengths and lessen the pressure on them. I.e. one guardian can be nominated to manage the children’s finances, whereas another can be chosen to act as a carer for the children and have custody.
With a guardian clearly noted in your will, your children will experience a smooth transition following your death and won’t have to deal with the prospect of being put into care if there is a dispute regarding their custody.
Guardianship avoids possible distress and provides clarity in terms of what will happen following your death. The guardians will be aware of their responsibilities beforehand and will not have the role thrust upon them, and will be able to discuss their duty with you at the time of nomination.
Modern families aren’t always straightforward, with many people going through divorces, second marriages, and so on. This can sometimes complicate the inheritance and who is entitled to what, which only emphasizes the importance of updating your will regularly.
You are able to make formal amendments to your will – called codicils – which can be done following a major incident, such as a divorce or a child being born.
You can do so as a way of protecting your children’s finances from being affected by changing circumstances, or to exclude anyone that is no longer in your life from being a beneficiary – perhaps an ex-partner.
It’s not only blood relatives that are able to be listed as beneficiaries either, as you are also able to set up foster child trust funds, or funds for step-children.
We are willing and able to help you create a will that fully represents your wishes and covers all corners regarding your children’s care and finances in the event of your death. We can help you with the technical wording of your will, ensuring that your requests are fully understood.
With the help of our trusted partners at Quick Wills, we can offer you the best, most accurate advice at an affordable cost. For a free consultation regarding any of our services and how we can help you, give us a call today or complete our short contact form and we will get in touch at a time most convenient for you.Get in touch