If you find yourself need to change the guardianship nominations for your children, there are some steps you need to take. All parents of minor children (and parents of special needs children) should nominate guardians in legal documents so that if the parents become unable to care for their children, temporarily or permanently, someone has the legal authority to take over. If your situation, or that of your nominated guardians, has changed here are the things you’ll need to do to update your plans:
- Find the documents which nominated the original guardians. These may be in your Will or in a separate guardianship nomination document, or both.
- Decide who the new nominated guardians should be, and who will be named as a back-up.
- Talk to the new potential guardians to make sure they will agree to serve.
- Contact your attorney to make the changes to the legal documents.
- Make sure all copies of documents with the old nominations have been collected and destroyed.
- Give copies of the new documents to those people who might need them. This could include the new guardians and childcare providers who might need to contact the new guardians in the event of an emergency.
- Depending on the circumstances you may wish to contact the old guardians and let them know you’ve made changes. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, just make sure that other friends or family members know that the change has been made and where the legal documents with the correct nominations are.
If you need a Massachusetts estate planning attorney to assist you in changing guardianship nominations for your children, just click on that link.