Naming legal guardians for your kids is easier than you think
As parents, we spend on average 37 hours a week worrying about our kids. For only $9, we can make sure that our kids will always have a safe place to call home, no matter what happens to us.
Does your brain never stop running? Thinking about the “what ifs” around taking care of your kids?
Who will pick my kids up from school if I can’t?
Have you thought about this? Then thought, “Oh that’s fine. I completed the alternate pick up form at the school.”
Reality check – that’s not for you. That’s to protect the school from liability. The alternate pick up form won’t allow the person you named on it to watch your kid if the police come asking, or if a judge makes a decision. Nope. It just protects the school.
Besides, do you want the person on the alternative pick up form to raise your kids?
Where will my kids go if my partner or I don’t come home?
Have you ever thought about it, ever worried about it? Ever heard that small voice in the back of your head saying, “What if…?” and then trail off ominously.
You have so many other things to worry about – big things, little things – that this just seems too overwhelming and you don’t know what to do.
Who will make sure my kids get to religious services if I don’t?
Religion and spirituality are a central part of your family; you and your partner decided that you’re going to raise your kids in the same tradition that you were raised.
You go to service every week, maybe more than once. You wake up early, take showers, put on nice clothes, and matching shoes (if you’re lucky).
What happens if you and your partner aren’t there to make sure your kids go? Who will take your kids? Who will make sure that they celebrate the holidays? Say their prayers before bed? Before each meal? Light the candles in the right order?
Right now, that’s you. Who will do it if you’re not around?
Who will make sure my kids don’t eat what they’re allergic to?
You’ve completed a special meal plan at the school, and your kid sits at the special “no-peanuts” table, but who makes sure at home that your kid doesn’t eat peanut butter.
You diligently read ingredient lists, food labels, and are surprised to find out how many things have peanuts in them.
Or soy. Or eggs. Or dairy. Or gluten.
Whatever it is. You are the person who makes sure your kids don’t eat something that will kill them. You keep the epi-pen in your purse, and you pray you never have to use it. But you will if you need to. Right in the leg.
Think it can’t happen to you?
1 in 20
Children who will lose one or both parents by age 15, not including parental figures such as grandparents
1 in 5
Children will experience the death of someone close to them by age 18
7 in 10
Teachers reporting at least one student in their class lost a parent in the past year
Children living in single-parent homes because of the death of one parent
(Children’s Grief Awareness Day, accessed June 24, 2020)
“There are no happy endings.
Endings are the saddest part,
So, just give me a happy middle
And a very happy start.”
Every Thing On It
– Shel Silverstein
We all want to do what’s best for our kids, even when that means thinking about how they’ll survive without us. That’s why we’ve made two easy options for you to get started (don’t worry, you can upgrade later if you want)
Name Legal guardians
Get (nearly) instant access to the forms and documents you need so you can name legal guardians for your kids today! It’s easy and it’s legal.
- 3 long-term legal guardian nominations
- 3 short-term guardian nominations
- Quick, easy, no fuss
- Immediate delivery of your completed documents
Children’s Action Plan
Take your planning a bit further and create an entire Children’s Action Plan with self-guided modules, workbooks and step by step program so you can make the best choices with ease.
- 3 long-term guardian nominations
- 3 short-term guardian nominations
- Step-by-step, self-guided program to help you choose the right guardians
- Workbooks, worksheets, and instructions to keep you on track
- Review of your final documents to make sure they’re correct
Hey! We’re Kathrine Leach and Julia Emery and we help parents design and build their Giving Forward Plans so that there will always be a plan in place to keep a roof over their kids’ heads and the money to keep their bellies full.
But over time we discovered that going from zero to sixty with creating your Last Will and Testament or (gulp) a Revocable Living Trust was a HUGE step in legal and financial planning. Most of our clients – especially our clients with young children – just wanted to get started by making sure there was a plan to take care of their kids.
Kathrine is a former military spouse and after speaking with other parents and doing some research, she learned about Family Action Plans. A Family Action Plan is a plan created by single parent servicemembers to take care of their children at home while they are deployed (and forever after if necessary).
The Family Action Plan seemed like the perfect fit to help bridge that gap. It needed some tweaks to make it more user friendly, but after lots of research, we finally got there!
Thus, the Children’s Action Plan was born to help parents bridge the gap between no planning and full-blown estate planning with the Last Will and Testament or Revocable Living Trust.
As soon as you want!
I’M NOT A PARENT YET, BUT I HAVE A BUN IN THE OVEN, CAN I MAKE THE CHILDREN’S ACTION PLAN NOW?
Yes, you can. However, you’ll want to update it if you discover your child has any medical or food allergies. We also recommended that you review your plan annually and update it as needed.
I’M DIVORCED FROM MY KIDS’ OTHER PARENTS, DO I NEED TO WORK WITH HIM OR HER TO CREATE THIS PLAN?
Yes, if you have sole legal and physical custody of your children.
If you have shared custody, then the most crucial things to reference will be the divorce decree, which typically includes guardianship language for the care of your joint children if you and your ex-spouse die. Check your divorce decree for this language. So long as your Children’s Action Plan matches the order, then you’re good to go. If you need to make changes to the guardians nominated in the divorce decree, you will likely need to return to your family law attorney or get a new court order before you can create the Children’s Action Plan.
That being said, you can most likely use this program to create the First Responders nominations and Family Care ID Cards, the Medical Information Guides, and the Family Information Guides. (We include the most likely language because that is also subject to your divorce decree.)
I’M A SINGLE-PARENT, WILL THIS WORK FOR ME?
Yes. Do you have legal and physical sole custody of your child? You must have full legal and physical custody rights to your child to create the Children’s Action Plan. The Family Care Plan used by the United States Military is only required for single parents. It is optional if both parents are still living. (We disagree, with think this is necessary for all families with children under the age of 18.)
MY KIDS ARE ALL IN COLLEGE, CAN I STILL name legal guardians for my kids?
No. Sorry. Unless your child is a prodigy and entered college as a minor (under the age of 18), then your college-aged kid is an adult (surprise!), and this plan will not work for them. We are working on a College Kids Program that will enable your post-kid pre-adult to #adult with the best of them, but it’s not ready yet.
HOW LONG WILL THIS PROGRAM TAKE FOR ME TO COMPLETE?
If you chooses ONLY to name your legal guardians, without the Children’s Action Plan, you can complete that in about 15 minutes! Talk about fast and easy!
If you choose to create your Children’s Action Plan and complete all of the planning modules, we estimate that it will take you about 10 hours to complete this program. That includes viewing the videos, completing the exercises, communicating with your nominated guardians, and getting your plan signed.
IF THIS DOESN’T WORK FOR ME, CAN I GET A REFUND?
We do not offer refunds on the “Name Legal Guardians” program.
WHY IS THIS ONLY AVAILABLE IN NEW JERSEY AND PENNSYLVANIA?
“Name Legal Guardians” is currently only available in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It is designed by attorneys licensed in those state for use by people living in those states. That means that the documents are specific to you state, which makes them way better than other online document solutions. It’s designed by licensed attorneys who understand your unique state concerns and processes around protecting children.
If you’ve read this far, you owe it to yourself to honestly answer these questions:
What happens to your kids if you don’t come home from work?
If you can’t answer that question definitely – and I mean with a rock-solid plan from the time that you are discovered to be missing, injured, or dead, to the time that a family member is appointed by a judge to act as their guardian – then you need to ask yourself …
What happens between the time the police officer picks up my kids to the time the judge appoints a guardian?
Do you know who will be able to take care of your kids? Do they have the documents to show you gave them authority? Do you know that a judge will accept the documents and honor your wishes?
What if just one first responder nomination from the Children’s Action Plan …
… prevented your child from spending hours in a police station?
What if having the CAP ID card in your wallet told a police officer, or doctor or nurse that…
… you had kids at school or at home that needed to be taken care of?
What if having the medical information guides prevented a child’s caregiver from…
…giving your child medicine or food that your kid is allergic to?
What if having named just one guardian in your Children’s Action Plan …
… prevents your kids from spending time with a – however caring – foster family?
What is that peace of mind worth to you?
Is it worth a “honey and me” vacation without the kids? Knowing that they can spend time with your parents, safe and secure.
Is it worth a good night’s sleep, not having the emotional labor of thinking “what if, what if, what if?”
Protect your kids. Get peace of mind.
Make sure your kids will always have a safe place to call home by naming your kids legal guardians today. It only takes about 15 minutes and prices start at $9.00.