As a single parent, you’re used to doing double-duty, acting as both mom and dad, and taking care of all the details by yourself. And when it comes to estate planning, attention to the details is all the more important when you’re parenting by yourself.
Here are a few tips for ensuring that your estate plan really takes care of your children:
- Work with an experienced estate planning attorney. An attorney with years of practical experience to draw on will be in a position to help you identify needs you may not have thought of. He or she can also help you anticipate problem situations, and take steps to avoid unnecessary conflict or stress.
- Make sure you’re insured. The importance of life insurance can’t be overlooked, especially if you’re the sole means of financial support for your children. Term life insurance coverage can be an inexpensive method for leaving your children a solid inheritance.
- Make sure you have a Will that names a guardian and a trustee for your children. You’ll want to name someone you trust to care for your children and their finances in the event of your death. If you’re divorced, your ex-spouse will likely get custody of your children if you pass away while your children are still minors. If you don’t believe this is in your children’s best interests, consult with an attorney to see what steps you can take to name a different guardian for your children.
- Put an incapacity plan in place. You need a durable financial power of attorney, as well as a durable healthcare power of attorney. With these documents, you can name someone you trust to take care of your finances and to make medical decisions for you in the event of your incapacity.