Considerations Before Agreeing to Be the Guardian of Minor Children

Being asked to serve as a Guardian for someone's minor children is usually thought of as a compliment.  But before accepting such a responsibility, consider what all is involved in being a Guardian.

Being a Guardian Involves Major Changes for Everyone

One of the first questions to consider is how becoming a Guardian will impact you and your family.  Will these children for which you will be the Guardian of move into your residence?  Are you living in the same town or a different town from where they are now?  How well do the members of your family mesh with the children that you are being asked to take and become their Guardian?  Will this role deprive your children of your time?  How will they react to this situation?  How do the parents preferences concerning religion, education, morals, and lifestyle compare with yours?  Are they compatible?

Financial Considerations

Even though most parents provide for education monies for their children when you are a Guardian, there are other expenses to be considered.  Is your house large enough to accommodate these new residents?  What about your other bills?  They are likely to increase as well for items such as food, transportation, and other daily living expenses.  Are you able to take on this additional financial cost?  Are you comfortable handling the finances for and on behalf of these children?  It may be a better idea to have someone else act as a trustee to handle the funds provided for the children.

Is There a Successor Guardian?

Find out if a Successor Guardian has been chosen in the event that you cannot serve or finish serving as a Guardian during their years as a minor.

In summary, it is best not to accept this responsibility if you really do not want to do so.  Do not say yes just because you are afraid it will disappoint.  Being a Guardian can be a very fulfilling role, but only if you understand what is expected of you and are willing to undertake the responsibilities.