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Legal guardians

(6 Posts)
TheHeirOfSlytherin Fri 05-Oct-12 13:43:21

Dh and I have been talking about who would be responsible for ds should anything happen to both of us.

There are only two people we feel we could trust to care for and make decisions for ds, my sister and dh's brother.

Obviously they don't live together and are never likely to so we would have to make a decision on who ds would live with (probably my sister as she is the more "settled" of the two of them). However we are keen that there will be two people responsible for ds in terms of making decisions for him/being responsible for his schooling/welfare - basically just everything dh and I do now. So we were thinking that it might work in the same way separated parents work (ds lives with my sister but dh's brother is also responsible for him).

Is this possible or would we have to pick my sister or dh's brother and only have one guardian? We really haven't a clue how any of this works and are just talking through options before we finalise anything.

Collaborate Fri 05-Oct-12 14:06:23

Guardians are not bound to have a child live with them. They are merely the ones in the immediate aftermath of the death of both parents who have the legal authority to make arrangements for the child without needing a court order. You can appoint both of them and leave it for them to agree what is best.

mumblechum1 Sat 06-Oct-12 04:48:24

As Collaborate says, the Guardians, in the circs you describe, would decide between themselves who the children would live with.

I'm a will writer and would suggest that you appoint both, but you could then add a few words to the effect that you would prefer them to reside with X, if practically possible, if you have a particular preference (eg, not changing schools because X lives close to their current school).

If you want to leave it as open as possible, simply don't express a preference.

mumblechum1 Sat 06-Oct-12 10:20:52

btw if you're interested Ihave a paid for advert over on Small Business Classifieds (Marlow Wills).

catsrus Sat 06-Oct-12 10:22:19

I'm appointed joint guardian in my friend's will - with another friend who lives 400 miles away. She simply trusted us to make the best decisions for her dcs should she die. My ex SIL did not want the responsibility of being guardian for my dcs so we chose this friend and my ex's best friend. My kids adored both of them and one of them actually used to say "we'll be ok if you die because X&Y will look after us". For me it was important to know that the kids were happy with our choice as they do reach an age when they ask questions like "who'll look after us if you die?". So my advice would be
1) make sure that the people you want are happy to do it - and be prepared that some might say 'no' (I was shock that anyone would not agree)
2) make sure your dcs are comfortable with whoever you choose - even though they might not end up with those people it's important they feel secure about the process.
3) once done then forget about it - but revisit it should you fall out with / lose contact with the people you've chosen.

TheHeirOfSlytherin Sun 07-Oct-12 08:12:25

Thank you for the advice, it's much appreciated. And I'll have a look at your ad mumblechum wink.

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