Congratulations! You’re expecting a baby – and are probably overwhelmed with long lists of things you must do to prepare for the baby before it’s born, and after you bring your newborn home. In addition to buying car seats, diapers, formula and clothing, you want to protect your baby’s future. Many parents open a college savings fund or take out life insurance – both important to safeguard your child. In addition to buying the necessities, it’s important for new parents to make plans to protect their child if they become severely ill or die. Here are 3 estate planning tips for parents to be.
1. Create A Will
64% of American’s don’t have a will. If you die without a will, it will take months for your estate to go through probate and for Illinois intestacy laws to determine who is entitled to your assets. Creating or updating your will is the best way to protect your new baby, see that your wishes are followed and make sure your family doesn’t have additional burdens if the unexpected happens.
2. Update Your Beneficiaries
If you have a job with insurance benefits, life insurance, investments, retirement savings or other financial accounts that have a beneficiary, you need to update your beneficiaries when you become a parent. Information on your beneficiary designation form will override your will.
3. Designate A Guardian
If you become incapacitated or ill and cannot care for your child, who will take care of your minor children? If you do not designate a guardian, the courts will determine who can make the legal and physical custody and decision-making decisions about your children. You can designate a guardian for your children after your death in a will, but if you become temporarily ill, your will does not apply. An Illinois Short Term Guardianship can protect your family if you are temporarily unable to care for your child.
To protect your loved ones, it’s important that you create legal documents to explain your wishes and provide for your family. When there is a major change in your life such as the birth of a child, call us at 630-864-5835 as soon as possible to update your estate plan.
The Estate and Probate Legal Group Serves Cook, Dupage, Kane, Lake, and Will counties in Illinois.