Why should you plan your estate while expecting your first child?

On Behalf of | May 17, 2019 | wills & estates

When North Carolina parents find out that they’re expecting a child for the first time, they often research what pregnancy is like, think about setting up a baby registry or pick out potential names for the child. It’s unlikely that planning for their estate is at the top of their list of priorities. It should be though.

Expecting parents in Statesville should speak with an estate planning attorney before their baby comes home. When they do, they should be prepared to draft a will, to name an executor of their estate and to set up a power of attorney and trust.

They should also come prepared to designate beneficiaries for any investment accounts or insurance policies that they may have. Appointing a guardian for their future child and having a funeral plan in mind is important too.

When you draw up a will, you allow for your final wishes to be known. It’s the executor’s responsibility to make sure that they’re upheld. They’re also obligated to pay your creditors, file your final tax return and distribute any remaining assets to your heirs. The individual that you appoint to this role should be someone that you trust.

For parents, it’s critically important that they have a guardian appointed that would step in and take care of their kids if something were to happen to them. You should take time to get to know their parenting style to see if you think that it would be acceptable for your own kids.

You should speak with your prospective guardian to make sure that they’re on board with taking on the responsibility of raising your kids. Since parenting a child can be expensive, you may want to set up a trust to cover any expenses that arise in raising them.

Changing your beneficiary designations is important too. It will ensure that your kids will be entitled to your investment accounts or insurance policy proceeds if something were to happen to you as well.

If you haven’t done so previously, then it’s important that you sit down to draft a will and plan your estate when you’re expecting a child. It’s one of the only ways that you can protect your assets for your beneficiaries if you become incapacitated and once you’re gone. An attorney can advise you of the type of planning that is necessary in your unique case.