Many people include a provision in their Will that designates a guardian for minor children after their death. That approach may prove insufficient. Remember, a Will only has effect after your death. It has no effect, for example, if you’re still alive but incapacitated (e.g. in a coma after getting “hit by a bus”).
A better approach is to execute a stand-alone document that has effect after either incapacity or death. The Texas Estates Code lays out the legal requirements for this type of stand-alone document. A stand-alone “Declaration of Guardian for Minor Children in the Event of Death of Later Incapacity” is a great complement to the Will and your estate plan.
Author Jim Cramp is the founder and principal attorney at the Cramp Law Firm. The Cramp Law Firm provides a spectrum of family-related legal services in the greater San Antonio Region.