As a parent, it’s your job to prepare for the unexpected. Just like you grab an extra diaper on the way out the door, provide healthy meals and insist on a proper car seat, you also should plan for “what if” something happens to you.
I was surprised to learn that 70% of Americans living with children under 18 do not have a will. 70%! I’ve surveyed hundreds of parents and they told me they didn’t want to “tempt fate,” spend the money or couldn’t decide whom to name as guardians. Most people surveyed by Rocket Lawyer said they just haven’t gotten around to it.
Does any of this sound familiar to you?
Understandably, deciding who would raise your child in your absence is one of the most difficult decisions you’ll face as a parent. No one will ever be as good as you and planning for or thinking about a hypothetical emergency where you are no longer able to provide care for your children can also be a stressful experience. As stressful as it may be, it is important that you give instructions to those you trust with the care of your children.
Whether you have a will, or more likely don’t have a will, my advice to you is the same: equip at least two people with simple, yet vital, instructions on how to care for your children in an emergency.
You see, just knowing that you don’t have a will saves your loved ones the time and stress looking for something that doesn’t exist. On the flip side, knowing that you do have a will and knowing where to find it does the same. Either way you’ve made a difficult time less difficult.
I’ve created The Torch so that parents and caregivers have the tools necessary to share essential instructions regarding the care of their children, with or without a will. The dependent notebook has a checklist with key contacts, documents, finances and other important information for not only your minor children but anyone with special needs under your care. It takes less than 10 minutes to fill it out.
Equipping someone else with all of the information they need to care for your children in an emergency is what responsible parents do.