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Should I Make an Estate Plan if I Had a Child in Iowa?

As you adjust to life as a new parent, you probably have not placed estate planning at the top of your to-do list. Instead, you have likely focused on car seats, pediatricians and child care options, all the while trying to fit in a few hours of sleep. However, becoming a new parent makes preparing your estate plan that much more important. While you may not like thinking about it, you should want to ensure that your child will receive the care he or she needs, if you should become incapacitated. An estate plan can alleviate this concern in a few different ways. For more information on why you should make an estate plan if you have just had a child in Iowa, please continue reading, then contact an experienced Des Moines estate planning lawyer today. Some questions you may have include:

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Does an Iowa estate plan ensure your child receives the care he or she deserves?

First and foremost, an estate plan can make sure that the people raising your children are those you would have wanted. Through a will, you can name a guardian, i.e. the person who would be caring for your children. Because you do not want to face your own mortality or you are finding it difficult to make such a critical choice, you might be reluctant to choose a guardian. Nevertheless, you leave it up to a judge to make that decision for you if you do not make that choice and do not document it in a legally valid will. In addition, your family might find themselves in a heart-wrenching and expensive court battle if you do not name a guardian.

How does an Iowa estate plan ensure your children’s guardian has the financial support they need?

Secondly, an estate plan can ensure that your children have access to the financial resources they need to receive the proper care. If your children are young, you can set up a trust as part of your estate plan. This trust will grant your children access to funds, if and when they need them. As an added benefit, the trust will prevent your children from mismanaging the money. A successor trustee – someone of your choosing – will manage the property in the trust with the purpose of using the assets in the trust for the benefit of your children, just as you would have done.

The probate process could tie up your assets for six months or longer if you do not have a trust in place for the benefit of your children. Furthermore, a court-appointed conservator, rather than a trusted friend or family member, may dictate the use of these assets.

Parents always want to serve the best interests of their children, which they can accomplish through an estate plan. If you have children and would like to protect their well-being, speak with one of our skilled Des Moines lawyers now.

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Herting Law, PLLC, is an Iowa-based law firm designed to help with all of your legal needs. Contact Herting Law, PLLC today for help.

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