Parents want to know that they’re doing what their children need. One thought that many parents don’t want to have to think about is what’s going to happen to the children if both parents are incapacitated or pass away. Unfortunately, this is possible, so all parents should ensure that they have an estate plan to address this.

You need to decide who will care for your children if you can’t. This person should be named as their guardian. Some people opt to choose their parents, but others want to pick someone younger. You should think carefully about this designation because it should be someone who will raise the children in a similar manner that you would. You also need someone who can handle the physical, mental and emotional demands of raising them.

You also need to consider the financial impact of raising the children. Consider using your life insurance policy, payable on death designations on financial accounts, your will and trusts to do this. Each of these tools serves a different purpose and can transfer money and assets to them in a legal manner. Be sure to speak to your attorney to ensure that you set things up, so they will benefit your children the most.

Another consideration is that you need your end-of-life plan set. You can do this through the living will and powers of attorney designations for your health care and your finances. Having these in order enable your loved ones to focus on helping your children if you’re incapacitated.

Ultimately, a comprehensive estate plan can help your children if something happens to you. Be sure to get things set up now, but don’t forget to review them periodically to ensure they still reflect your wishes.