It’s very easy to assume that, as a new parent, you’re a long way from needing an estate plan. Yes, you now have an heir to whom you eventually want to pass your assets, but that’s decades in the future. Your heir isn’t even a year old yet. You feel like you can wait.
There are many problems with this type of procrastination, though, no matter how much it seems to make sense at the time. It’s actually best to create an estate plan sooner rather than later, with the understanding that you can always update it as the years or even decades go by.
Choosing a guardian for your child
Keep in mind that leaving assets is only part of what an estate plan does. You can also choose a guardian who will take care of the child if needed. Unexpected deaths happen every day in car accidents, workplace accidents or due to sickness and disease. Even if you feel that your odds of passing away are small, it’s better to have a plan in place, so you know your child will be taken care of.
Leaving assets to a minor
You should also consider how leaving assets to a minor differs from leaving them to an adult. For instance, as long as your child is under 18, you may want to put those assets in a trust. This way, if you pass away before your child reaches adulthood, the trust can hold the assets until they’re at a more responsible age.
As you can see, you have much to consider. It’s important to know exactly what estate planning options exist.