Guardianship

Tuesday, 10 September 2013 23:39 Written by 
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As parents you wish to be sure that in the possible (although unlikely) event of you dying before your children reach the age of 18 people you approve of will take care of those children. It may be that you have different views on this subject from your spouse or civil partner but communication here is important so that you reach an agreement which will be in the best interests of the children.

So how do you, as parents, appoint guardians for your children? You can, in a signed and dated document, appoint a guardian or guardians who will be responsible for your children should the worst happen. The appointment need not be in a Will. However, most parents choose to appoint guardians by Will and this is good practice because a Will is less likely to be forgotten about or mislaid after a death than a separate, less formal document.

To avoid difficulties parents should appoint the same guardians and only the appointment in the Will of the second parent to die should take effect. Wills are usually prepared in this way.

If you wish you can appoint guardians subject to conditions. For example, you could appoint someone to be guardian on the condition that that person is under the age of 60 at the death of the survivor of you and have a substitute guardian if the person was over that age.

When you have decided who to appoint it goes without saying that you should consult with them to confirm that they are willing to take on this role.

Read 13519 times Last modified on Sunday, 29 September 2013 18:00
James Mackenzie

James Mackenzie is a Private Client Solicitor specialising in Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Probate and Estate Administration and related tax advice, especially inheritance tax.