Even though the need to create an estate plan is universal, it’s especially important for single parents to create a plan in case of their untimely death or incapacity. Not only is it important to do this when their children are young, but also after the children have reached adulthood.
For any single parent, creating an estate plan is absolutely vital to protect their children. An estate planning attorney can help with the creation of a personalized plan. Some other tips that can help with this are found here.
If you are a single parent, and the other parent is also a caregiver with some involvement in your child’s life, then they are likely going to be given custody if something happens to you. However, if you are the one with sole custody, and the other parent is not involved in your child’s life at all, then you will need to name someone who would serve as the child’s guardian if something happens and you pass away before your child is an adult.
An estate tax is charged if you have a larger estate. However, money can be transferred from the wife to husband or vice versa, without any type of estate tax being issued. This is not the case if you are leaving money to your child.
Because you aren’t married, you will have to work out a plan that helps you avoid or reduce the estate tax if you plan to leave your assets to your children. Otherwise, they are going to lose a large amount of your estate to cover the taxes.
If you experience any type of serious medical emergency, you may not be able to express your preferences or even provide care during to the situation. In this case, there needs to be someone who can make decisions on your behalf. If you don’t have an incapacity plan in place, and your child is an adult, it’s possible that the decisions will fall to your child. If you don’t want to put this burden or potential guilt on your child, then you need to create an incapacity plan that outlines your wishes before you get into this type of situation.
The Complications of Planning for a Minor
If you want to make sure that you provide a financially secure future for your child, even in a situation where something happens to you, then creating a last will and testament isn’t enough. If you plan to have a will and leave money to your child who is still a minor, then you will have to appoint a guardian for the funds. Once the child reaches adulthood, then they receive everything. However, this could also be problematic if your newly 18-year-old child has no experience managing money. As a result, you need to ensure that you create a structure to distribute your child’s inheritance appropriately.
If you are a single parent and you want to ensure your child or children will be cared for and secure after your death, then it’s best to speak with an estate planning attorney like The KC Estate Planner, LLC. They can help ensure you get the adequate plan in place.