Financial Guardian for Your Minor Child

There are two types of guardianships for a minor child: legal guardian and financial guardian. As you know, the legal guardian is the physical guardian of your child. A trust can name a financial guardian for your minor child, but it cannot name a legal guardian.

If you create a trust for your minor child, your successor trustee in essence becomes the financial guardian of that child. The successor trustee will follow the instructions you put in the trust document about how to manage and distribute your property for the benefit of the child.

When people divorce, they often overlook the fact that if they die and leave their assets to their minor child, the surviving natural parent becomes the physical guardian and also controls the assets that were left to the child.

You can prevent your ex-spouse from having control of your children's money and property by placing your assets in trust and naming a successor trustee who you are confident will manage and spend the money only for the benefit of your child.

Another possibility is that both parents could die in a common accident. Therefore, you may want to create a will to name a person who will be physical guardian of your minor child, but create a trust that names a successor trustee to manage the property for that child.

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