When Texans think about estate planning, they are likely to focus on their will, a trust and other basic documents to determine how their property will be distributed after they are gone. This is thoroughly understandable since financial issues are a common point of contention among loved ones.
The document is also designed to protect children by ensuring they get what the parent believes they are entitled to. However, for parents with children under 18, they should make sure they think about who will care for the kids if they are no longer around.
A guardianship can achieve this. When creating a guardianship, it is important to be fully aware of key facts under the law as to how it works. For these sensitive topics, it is imperative to be well-versed in what steps to take.
When naming a guardian in an estate plan, there are specific requirements
The Lone Star State has a procedure it uses when the parents or others who are responsible for a minor have died and a guardian must be named. When designating someone as part of their estate plan, there are rules that must be adhered to.
If the guardian is named in the estate plan and the parent dies or becomes incapacitated, the person will be appointed by the court. This will take precedence over anyone else who might ask to be the guardian or is deemed qualified to serve in the role.
There are situations where the court will not allow the designated person to serve as the guardian. For example, the court can disqualify a person from being a guardian because they are also a minor; they have a history of poor conduct; they are incapacitated; they have conflicts of interests; or they are believed to be incapable of adequately caring for the child.
Other reasons why a person can be disallowed as a guardian include that they are deceased; they refuse to serve; or letting them be the guardian would not suit the child’s best interests.
Do not forget about the importance of naming a guardian for minor children
Having an estate plan is a responsible thing to do. Despite that, there are aspects that can be forgotten but turn out to be extremely important. One is a guardianship for minor children.
Failing to take this crucial step can leave the children at the mercy of the court with the parents’ preferences completely shunted to the side. To avoid any unpredictable outcomes, a guardianship for a minor should be considered as part of estate planning with help from professionals who understand the requirements and how it can be done effectively.