In today’s video blog, Bridget talks about a question she received from a young family recently wanting to know the difference between a guardian of a minor child and a trustee.
Hi there. Bridget Mackay here. And, I’m an estate planning attorney and elder law attorney in Petaluma. I have a question or had a question from a young family recently wanting to know the difference between a guardian of a minor child and a trustee.
Just to put this in context to answer this question. If a family who had minor children were to create a trust, then they would have a couple of choices in that trust.
One is they would be able to decide who would be the physical guardian of their children should they pass away or they should they not be able to take care of their children. That’s a nomination they would make in their will. Which would be a part of their trust package. And so, that person that they name would have all the physical responsibilities for that child. Raising them, getting them to school, clothing them, feeding them, making medical decisions. And, then the other side of it in their trust. They would appoint a trustee to manage that minor’s assets until they’ve decided what age that minor could take care of their money on their own. Which hopefully they’ll, they won’t be a minor at that point. So, that role can be done by someone else than the physical guardian.
And so, the two rules that a young family needs to think about is number one. Who is the financial guardian for their minor? And number two, who will be the physical guardian of their minor? So that could be two different people. It could be the same person, it all just depends on your situation. And, the best way to figure that out is to make an appointment with an experienced estate planning attorney to help you make those decisions and build those documents.