If you are a parent in Illinois, one of your greatest responsibilities is the care of your children. You may also have to consider who will assume that role if you are unable to do so. Choosing a guardian for your children is an extremely important decision, and it requires careful consideration of your values and priorities. Here at Zapolis & Associates, P.C., we understand the gravity of this decision.
According to The Simple Dollar, there are several areas you should consider regarding any potential guardian before making a decision. First, recognize that planning for your children's future in the event of your death often involves much more than solely appointing guardians. It may be wise to set up a living trust, or take similar measures, to ensure that your children's needs are met after your death.
While deciding who you want to raise your children, consider your core beliefs. While there is leeway for individual personalities and preferences, you may wish to choose a guardian whose basic belief system is similar to yours. The philosophical environment in which your children will grow up may be more important even than their financial provision. A good guardian should also have to ability to communicate those values to your children, as well as to guide them through life's many difficult and confusing situations. Of course, the guardian you choose should also be financially stable. Clearly, you do not want to place your children into a home which cannot provide for their physical needs.
You should also consider your guardian's relationship with your own extended family. If you wish your kids to continue seeing their grandparents and other relatives, choosing a guardian who already has a relationship with those family members is a wise idea. If that is not feasible, it may be beneficial to choose someone who at least has his or her own strong family ties. More information about appointing a caretaker for your family members is available on our webpage.