The birth or adoption of a child is always an ideal reason to decide to make or update your Will. Aside from ensuring that your child is financially looked after should you die, a Will can also be used to nominate a legal guardian to care for them if you pass away before they turn 18.
Who can be a Legal Guardian?
Anybody who you trust to raise and care for your child can be a Legal Guardian. Usually this is a family member or next of kin, however you can also nominate a friend. Becoming a Legal Guardian is a life changing experience, so it is vital that you discuss the full implications with the person you are nominating.
What are the responsibilities of a Legal Guardian?
A Legal Guardian takes the place of a deceased parent, so they have exactly the same parental responsibilities.
What happens if I don’t name a Legal Guardian?
If you don’t have a Legal Guardian nominated in your Will, the courts will then decide the best person to look after your child. This could mean that they end up living with someone who you wouldn’t have chosen. While this process happens, your child could find themselves living with family members or, in some cases, in a foster home. This can worsen an already, potentially traumatic experience for them.