If you haven't done so already, the moment that you find out that you're expecting a child, you should start thinking about estate planning. One decision to make is whom you will appoint as your child's guardian if something were to happen to you while they are still a minor. There are several factors you should consider when selecting whom you want to appoint to this role.
Parents who have more than one child may wish to appoint a single guardian for all of their children or specify a different one for each. Selecting a different guardian for each child may be necessary if you have a particularly large family. Just remember, however, that it will limit considerably the time that they are able to spend with one another.
It can be costly and difficult to run a household that has multiple moving parts. The thought of this may turn off a prospective guardian from assuming this role. If the thought of splitting up your kids bothers you, then you may want to appoint a different guardian who would be willing to raise them all together.
The person that you appoint in this role should be supportive of your parenting style and have a belief system similar to your own. You may find it comforting to know that if you couldn't be there yourself that the kids will be reared similarly to how you had planned.
Before you finalize the choice of a guardian for your kids, you should first broach the subject with the intended guardian(s) to determine if they are will to take on such a responsibility. It's important that you make sure that they can afford to take care of your kids. They should be healthy and young enough to rise to the challenge of childrearing. If they're not, then you'll definitely want to select alternates if they're unavailable to assume the role.
You need to have more than just a verbal agreement with someone to raise your kids if you can't. Put your preferences in writing if you want them to be honored later. This gives you the best chance of having your final wishes upheld by a New York probate court judge. An estate planning attorney can help you prepare for the future so that your loved ones' futures are assured after you're gone.