Starting a family is one of the most exciting times in our lives. With marriage and children comes responsibility to plan for our futures and ensure our loved ones are taken care of in the event of tragedy. While many young families may feel as though they can put off planning their estate, the truth is that it is never too early to start or too late to revise.
One of the first things new families will need to consider is appointing guardianship for children in the event both parents pass away. Although it is difficult to think about, children need to be entrusted to a reliable person to raise them to adulthood. The difficulty often lies in both parents coming to agreement on who should raise the children in a scenario like this.
Another important step is naming an executor to your estate to ensure your children receive all that is due to them should both you and your spouse pass away. Choosing who will manage your estate can have a tremendous impact on the situation and should be someone trustworthy and willing to go the distance until the children are grown and able to take responsibility.
Purchasing life insurance should be a strong consideration of any couple with children. When one or both parents pass away, surviving family will need benefits to help pay the mortgage, college tuition, and live a comfortable and dignified life. How much life insurance you need will depend on many factors including your home’s value, how many children you have, and the type of education and lifestyle you expect your children to have as they grow.
Additionally, you will need to decide how your life insurance and other benefits are disbursed to your surviving children. Some individuals choose to distribute money to children over time when they reach certain birthdays while others create a trust and have someone manage the benefits until the children are mature enough to manage large sums of money responsibly.
Many people think they need to have a high net worth and large estates to warrant such considerations but the truth is that anyone with a modest estate that includes a home, life insurance, and retirement benefits needs to consider helping children posthumously. Growing up without parents can be difficult enough for children but that situation can be seriously complicated without the foresight and consideration to plan for their futures in these situations.