As we head into the third year of the pandemic, you’re considered lucky if you haven’t gotten sick. And it’s almost certain that you know someone who has.
Although serious illness and death are something we are always at risk for, the pandemic has forced many of us to face our own mortality like no other event in recent memory.
Even if you manage to avoid becoming sick right now, the fact remains that we are all vulnerable to serious illness or injury, regardless of how young or healthy you are. And as a parent, one of the most frightening aspects of that reality is knowing that if something happens to you, your children would be left without you to care for them.
Let's look at the following scenario: You and your spouse are out to dinner and your kids are at home with the babysitter. On your way home, you get into a car accident. When you fail to make it home on time, the babysitter calls you repeatedly, but when no one answers, she calls the police.
The police arrive and find your kids with the babysitter, who offers to stay with the children until a relative can be found to take them. But because the babysitter doesn’t have the legal authority to care for the children—even temporarily—the police have no choice but to call Child Protective Services. These authorities will take your children into custody until they can locate and/or appoint the proper guardian. Even if you have friends or family living nearby who are willing to care for the children, this would still be the case.
If you haven’t left proper legal documentation, the authorities have no option but to call Child Protective Services. Even if you’ve named legal guardians for your children in your will, it wouldn’t matter as your will only becomes operative in the event of your death, so if you are incapacitated by an accident or illness, your will would be ineffective.
These are just a few of the many scenarios that can cause your children to be taken into custody by strangers. Sadly, we see it all too often. By the time we get the call, it’s really too late.
As a result of special training we at Truest Law have received, we offer a comprehensive system known as the Kids Protection Plan, which is included with every estate plan we prepare for families with young children. Developed by a nationally recognized attorney, who is a mom herself, the Kids Protection Plan provides parents of minor children with a wide array of legal planning tools to make sure there is never a question about who will take care of their kids if they are in an accident or suffer some other life-threatening incident.
It’s important to note that If you have already named long-term guardians in your will, either on your own or with a lawyer, we can review your existing legal documents to see whether you have made any of the common mistakes that could leave your children at risk.
Although the pandemic is likely to go down as one of the most tragic periods of our lifetime, it does work at motivating people to get serious about estate planning, as it should. Contact us today where we can make sure that the people you love are cared for in the case of an emergency.