How to Arrange for Guardianship of Your Children After Your Death

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Name a guardian in your will to ensure that your children will be raised by the person you have selected should something happen to you.

Think carefully about who you would like to have raise your children should you and your spouse die.

Have your attorney write a will, or write your own using a self-help law book or kit.

Name the person or couple you have selected to be the personal guardian for your child in the section of your will that deals with guardianship of minor children.

Give some specifics about how you know this person, why you have selected him or her and why you want this person to raise your children.

Understand that a judge will make the final determination about guardianship. You want to convince the judge that you are right and the best way to do this is to write your reasons down.

Specify if you do not want the other parent to care for the children. A parent generally will have first opportunity to raise the child, but if the other parent is unfit or if he or she abandoned the children, you need to explain this and ask that the court appoint the person you have chosen instead.

Discuss your choice with the person you have selected and make sure he or she is willing to accept the responsibility should it become necessary.

Realize that you may name this same person to be the guardian of the children's money and finances, or you can name a separate person. This is purely up to you.

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