It’s an unsettling thought – you and your partner are in the hospital suffering from respiratory distress, spiking fevers, and severe muscle aches, while your newborn needs to be fed, your toddler entertained, and your fourth-grader home-schooled. Your siblings live too far away and your parents are too high risk to come within six feet of your house.
Five months ago, this scenario would have seemed outlandish. Today, it’s entirely plausible; there’s a strong possibility that if one adult in a household contracts COVID-19, another will too — often within days. Even if you’re never struck with COVID-19, accidents do happen — and there may be times, when the pandemic is long gone, that you’ll need someone to care for your kids in an emergency … or, worse yet, in the event of your incapacity or death. That is why the importance of legally naming both short and long-term guardians for your children cannot be overstated.
Short-Term Guardians. These are family members, friends, and neighbors who know your children well and could be at your home within 30 minutes to comfort and care for them until a long-term guardian could arrive. By giving short-term guardians (aka first responders) legal authority to be with your children and putting into place a sensible notification protocol for caregivers, you can ensure that your kids will NEVER end up in protective custody.
Long-Term Guardians. Who would raise your children with your core values and principles? Who would love and support them unconditionally? On the flip side but equally important, is there anyone you would NOT want parenting your children? These are the challenging questions every parent should ask themselves when identifying and legally documenting which family members or friends they would want standing in their shoes in the event of a tragedy.
Admittedly, working through this process can be emotional. But instead of approaching it with fear and sadness, focus on your trust and confidence in the guardians you choose and find power and peace in the fact that you're doing right by your littlest loved ones.
After all, advance planning is truly an act of love.
Call Seven Generations Law today at 310/907-8057 to learn more about protecting your littlest loved ones and ensuring that they're always cared for by those you choose.