3 Reasons New Parents Need a Will

Prepare for the unexpected:

When your family grows, there are new situations you should consider. Having a Will can serve as a foundation to provide for your surviving family members. You should consider the possibility that both spouses pass away at the same time and leave a minor child behind. Or, the surviving parent passes away without creating or updating their Will. Young couples may travel to third world countries or take adventures that could be dangerous. Therefore, it would be prudent to plan for the welfare of your child and how you would like your affairs wrapped up. A will and a trust for your minor child may be the tools in you need.

In your Will you can name an executor who will conduct an inventory of your property, contact your creditors, manage your property so creditors can be paid, and distribute your property the way you set out in your Will. You may not feel comfortable with specific family members going through your chest of drawers, computer files, and other personal affairs, so the Will gives you the opportunity to select the executor, instead of allowing the court to pick someone.

Protect your child’s inheritance with a Trust:

Creating a trust for your minor child is a way to ensure the property your child inherits is not mishandled or misused before the child reaches the age of majority. Your Will can set up a trust so that any property your child receives will go into a trust. Cash and/or funds from the sale of your property will fund the trust, so there is no reason to put money in the trust before your death. You can even name the trust as the beneficiary of your life insurance policy.

By creating a trust, you can select a responsible person to serve as a trustee. The trustee will manage and invest the funds and have discretion to provide funds to the child for their health, education, and welfare until the child reaches the age you choose. You may not want your child to inherit all the funds when they turn 18, so you have the option of keeping the trust until your child turns 21.

If you have a child from a prior relationship and do not have a trust, then the property your child inherits may be controlled by your ex-spouse until the child turns 18 years old. Unfortunately, without a trust the money is subject to being misused, wasted, or depleted leaving your child nothing when they are old enough to receive the funds. A trust can prevent such a terrible situation.

Name a Guardian:

No one wants to think about both parents passing away at the same time, but not thinking about it does not decrease the chances of it happening. Being responsible dictates that you consider the possibility. It does not take much effort to imagine the chaos that could ensue if you do not name a guardian of your child in your Will.

Your in-laws and siblings may argue over the right to serve as guardian. Perhaps you believe any of your family members would be a great guardian, but chances are you are like most people and have that one family member you think would not make the best person to raise your child. In your Will you can set forth not only who you want to be guardian, but you can name the person or persons that you do not want to be the guardian.

Contact the Law Office of Hugh Spires, Jr. at 210-875-5700 or email us at hspires@TexasWillsLawyer.com to discuss your family and ways to protect them.