Protecting your Family in Tupelo, MS

Happy Family — Planning Tupelo, MS
For any family with young children, your estate plan should build off a foundation that ensures they will always be taken care of, no matter what. At Harrison Law Office PLLC in Tupelo, MS, one of our greatest areas of expertise is planning for and protecting your children.

What Could Happen Without Family Planning?

Without proper planning, if the unthinkable happens to you, here are some possible consequences:
  • Your children could be placed into Child Protective Services (CPS) despite having a will, and even if you have a living trust while your legal documents are located or your family is identified. Your kids could be left in the care of the one person in your family you would never want raising them.
  • A judge who doesn't know you or your family will decide who will raise your kids, even if it's the last person you would ever want.
  • Approximately 5 percent of the total value of your assets could be lost due to probate, a court process that can tie up your assets for months or years and deprive your kids of the resources they need to live comfortably;
  • When your kids turn 18, they get a check for whatever assets are left – outright with no protection;
  • There are unscrupulous people who make it their business to review public records to find out what 18 year old are coming into money;
  • The vast majority of estate planning attorneys simply do not address these issues, and do not plan from a parent's perspective.
We have dedicated our life's work to make sure these things don't happen to your kids. That's why we offer a Kids Protection Plan® with every estate plan we prepare for families with young children.

Naming Guardianship for Children

Did you know 69 percent of parents have not named legal guardians for their children? Of the 31 percent who have, most have made one of these 6 common mistakes:

1. Only named one possible guardian, without considering what to do if something happens to the first choice.
2. Named a couple, but didn't specify what should happen if the couple broke up or one of the partners in the couple died.
3. Only setting up a will. The Court will still distribute your money; it's public and doesn't protect your money if your children ever face a lawsuit or divorce.
4. Looked at financial resources of potential guardians. They don't have to—and many times shouldn't—be financial decision makers for your kids.
5. Did not specify anyone to exclude as guardians. What happens if their possible guardian challenges your decisions, or a guardian is selected that you know you'd never want to watch over your kids?
6. Only named long-term guardians without considering the short term. After an accident, what could happen in the hours until your permanent guardians arrive?
If you do nothing, the decision about who would raise your children would be left up to a judge to decide; a judge who doesn't know you, doesn't know what's important to you, and doesn't know your children.

That judge will make all the decisions about who cares for the people who are most important to you, and we know that's not what you want.

If you and your spouse or partner cannot agree on who would be the ideal guardian(s) for your kids, we're here to help. We have special training from the Family Wealth Planning Institute on helping parents work through this critical decision.
Hands of Child and Parents — Planning Tupelo, MS
Not sure if a Kids Protection Plan® is right for you? We're happy to answer those questions. Contact us today to set up your appointment and find out more information!
Background information available upon request. Mississippi does not certify specialists, and no claim of certification is made herein.