In an ideal world we would always agree with our spouse...that is not the world that we live in. When it comes to the very important decision of choosing guardians for your children - you are not alone if you and your spouse don't agree. I don't have a magic formula for making the correct decision, but here are three strategies that should make the decision easier.
Separate The Roles
Instead of thinking that you are naming a guardian that will handle everything, think of it as naming people to two positions.
The first is the role of physical custodian. These are the people that your children will live with, learn from, and love. Here you need to think about who shares your values and is capable of instilling them in your children.
The second role is the financial role. These people will manage the money and assets you leave for your children. While it's important that they have your children's best interest at heart, they are not the people that will raise your children.
Don't Only Think Of Couples
My clients often have it set in their minds that they must name a couple as guardians. That is not completely necessary. You should consider single people as well.
Further, even if you do name a couple, there is no guarantee that they will always be a couple. Things happen. People get divorced and people die.
Consider The Relationship Your Children Have With Potential Guardians
It is important that you like the people you name as guardians for you children. It is even more important that your children like the people you names a guardians.
The guardians you name must be people that your children know, like, and trust. Keep the relationships your children have with potential guardians in the forefront of your mind when making your decision.
If you'd like to learn more about Naming Guardians for Your Minor Children or have any other Estate Planning questions, please schedule a complimentary Estate Planning Strategy Session.