When people think about estate planning, they are often thinking about the end of life, not the beginning. That’s why they may decide to do it if they get a serious health diagnosis, for instance, and that time simply seems closer. They may also do it based on their age, understanding of general life expectancy and knowing that they need to plan ahead.
And that is important to do this, but what you find is that having a new child could also mean it’s time to think about estate planning. This new life has entered yours, and you certainly hope to have decades together, but it means you need to think about that child’s future. Estate planning is a way for you to protect them and provide for them, even if you are not around to do so.
Setting up a guardian
To begin with, you may want to choose a guardian for your child. If you and your significant other were both to pass away, who would you want to raise the child? Who gets to make their medical decisions? What types of goals and ideals do you want this person to have? Who do you know that is willing and capable to take on the responsibility?
Next, you do want to think about what happens to your assets. Since your child is so young, odds are you do not want to leave the assets to them directly. This may mean that it’s time to create a trust, giving you the opportunity to pick how that money will be used. It could be used for medical expenses, for instance, or educational costs.
But no matter what your goals are, having a child means it’s time to address them. Be sure you know what steps to take.