If you’re in the early process of drafting a will, you’ll first want to come up with a list of people to include as heirs. Keep in mind that you should also consider including guardians and others that you’ll expect to play important roles in your family’s future affairs.
Aguardian” is a court-monitored role that provides care for a person, also known as a ward, and can manage their health, daily needs, shelter, or finances. Anyone can be appointed as a legal guardian and their scope of responsibilities depends on what you request in your will.
Consider these three guardianship concerns when planning your will.
How Many Guardianships Are There?
There are two main types of guardians. The first is the “guardian of the ward” who makes decisions for a person that cannot provide for themselves, either physically or mentally. The ward can also be an underage child needing adult supervision and care.
In some cases, the government can request the appointment of a guardian for a ward. The government will determine if there is no family member available to care for the ward and will assign one themselves. The second type of guardian role is the “guardian is of the estate” who manages the ward’s property or finances.
Is Guardianship Necessary in Estate Planning?
The biggest takeaway about a guardian is that you can add one to your estate plan based on your family’s unique situation. In other words, you don’t need to assign a guardian in your will, but not doing so may seem unwise as a court may decide what will become of your belongings should you become incapacitated. Before deciding to assign a guardian, consider the person who needs help and if other options are available.
Are There Alternatives to Guardianships?
If you happen to dislike the idea of having a guardian overseeing your affairs, there are other options. You may:
- Assign a family member.
- Appoint an attorney to make your financial, business, or property-related decisions.
- Allow the Social Security Administration to hand your benefits over to a representative payee of your choice even if he/she isn’t a legal guardian.
Create an Estate Plan with Our Lawyers in McAllen
Create an estate plan with our lawyers in McAllen and decide together who you’ll be assigning as a guardian. Contact us today to learn more about our estate planning services in McAllen.