Making a will is always important, but for anyone with children under the age of 18, it’s absolutely essential. Many people think that if they die, their children will automatically be placed with a close relative. Unfortunately, this isn’t always true. It is possible that your children could be placed in care whilst the courts decide who should be their legal guardian.
Fortunately, this lengthy and distressing process can easily be avoided by writing a will and nominating a guardian for your children in the event of your death. This role obviously carries an enormous burden of responsibility with it, so you need to make sure you choose the right person.
A guardian will usually be a relative or close friend, whom you trust to be able to bring up your children. You also need to think about practicalities, such as the size of their house and their financial position, and stipulate that they should make a will with an appointed guardian as well. Above all, you should ask the person concerned to make sure they’re happy to act in that capacity.
You can also, if you wish, appoint different guardians for different children, but this would inevitably mean siblings being split up, which may not be in their best interests.
If you do not make a will for any other reason, make one to protect any children you may have under the age of 18.
Contact one of our wills and probate solicitors about drafting a will and appointing a testamentary guardian for your children – a simple will costs just £150 [plus VAT].