Appointing a Guardian

This guide to appointing a guardian is for your family members and friends about what they need to do after you die. We understand that this can be a confusing and challenging time, and we aim to help you understand the processes and also the procedures you should follow.
This guide is for England and Wales only

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Appointing a Guardian

We recommend that you appoint a Legal Guardian for any children you have that are under the age of 18.

A lot of parents do not think about what could happen if they both die while their children are dependent on them. You must plan to ensure your children’s best interests are secure for their future.


The responsibilities of a Guardian

The Guardians that you appoint will be responsible for the day-to-day care of your children. Therefore, you must consider the suitability of each candidate for this role. Most importantly of all, they will make critical decisions on all aspects of your child’s life, including:

  • Security
  • Education
  • Health and Welfare
What will happen if I do not appoint a Guardian?

If both you and your partner die without appointing a guardian, the courts and social services will decide who takes care of your children. As a result, these guardians may not necessarily be who you would want them to be. Finally, this process can be quite lengthy, and unfortunately, during this time, your children could be taken into care.



Appointing a Guardian

It would be best if you appointed a Guardian who is trustworthy, reliable, and capable of carrying out the duties you outline within your Will.

Appointing a guardian ensures that your children are cared for by people that you trust. To appoint guardians for your children, you must provide their full name and address within your Will.

Furthermore, you should consult your choices beforehand to confirm that they are willing to accept this responsibility.

What if my Guardian is unable to Act?

In some circumstances, an individual may not be able to fulfill their role as a Guardian for a variety of reasons:

  • Either the individual does not wish to undertake the role of your children’s Guardian.
  • The person you named loses capacity due to sickness or age.
  • Your nominated guardian dies before you.


Substitute Guardians

It is good practice to appoint a substitute Guardian in case those you chose are unwilling or unable to fulfill this role. This is best practice, and will also help to aid a smoother process when you pass away.

In some circumstances, you may need to change your appointed Guardians. In this case, you would need to update your Will to reflect this change – which is free with Your Will Be Done.


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