Having a child and being a parent is a beautiful thing. While no parent wants to think about it, planning for the slim possibility that something happens to both you and your spouse, leaving your child parentless, is important. At the Law Office of Heather M. Ward, we can work with you to name a guardian for your child in Massachusetts. To learn more about the importance of naming a guardian and how to get started, call our law firm directly today.
Why Is Naming a Guardian for a Child Important?
Naming a guardian for your child is one of the most important things that a parent can do. Your chosen guardian is the person who will provide care for your child in the event that you and your spouse (the child’s other parent) both die or are rendered so severely incapacitated that you are unable to provide for your child. Naming a guardian is essential; if you don’t have a named guardian and something does happen to you, then the guardianship decision will be turned over to the court. This means that someone that you don’t choose could be responsible for raising your child.
How to Name a Guardian for Your Child—the Legal Process
Fortunately, legally naming a guardian for your child is a straightforward and simple process. You will appoint a guardian for your child in writing; often, this is done when you create a will. At the time that you appoint a guardian for your child, the statement will need to be signed by you and two witnesses. The appointed guardian will also need to accept the guardianship in writing.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Guardian
Choosing who will raise your child in the event that you aren’t able to do so is a huge decision, and one that can feel terrifying and overwhelming. When thinking about who should be the guardian of your child, some factors to consider include:
- Where you live and where the guardian lives—relocation for a child can be traumatic, especially after a parent’s death;
- Age and maturity level—you want to choose someone who you’re confident can handle the responsibilities of a child; and
- Lifestyle and beliefs—it’s important to think about whether you want your child raised by someone who maintains the same values, religious beliefs, and lifestyle as you.
You should also consider whether your chosen guardian is married or in a relationship, whether they have other kids, and the family environment. It’s always a good idea to have a one-on-one conversation with your selected guardian before naming them in any official legal document.
Call Our Family Law Attorney Today
At the Law Office of Heather M. Ward, we know that it can be emotional to think about someone else caring for your child. In the event that the unthinkable does happen, knowing that your child will be cared for by an individual or couple that you trust can bring peace of mind. To learn more about how to legally name a guardian for your child, call the Law Office of Heather M. Ward directly today. You can reach us by phone or online at your convenience.