If you have minor children, one of the most important questions you may
face in putting together your will or trust is choosing a guardian for them.
No parent likes to think of their children growing up without them. It
is a heartbreaking scenario to even imagine, much less see in print on
paper. However, even more heartbreaking than seeing it in print is leaving
it to chance. If you have not named a guardian for your minor children,
then when a guardian is needed, that choice will be made by the court.
It will be up to the court, not you, to determine who is the best person
to step in and raise your children. The court will do the best job it
can in making that selection, but the decision will still be made by well
meaning strangers rather than a loving parent.
Once you choose your ideal guardian, do the guardian a favor and record
some thoughts about your philosophy for raising children. Better yet,
have a discussion with the potential guardian to see if your philosophies
mesh. It is unrealistic to think that the guardian will make every decision
regarding your children exactly as you would have, but it is not unrealistic
to make sure the guardian’s basic beliefs about raising children
are beliefs you can endorse.
Being selected as a guardian is an honor. Put the appropriate amount of
time and planning into the selection that the honor, and your children deserve.