Becoming a parent changes more than just your sleep schedule. Once you become responsible for another human being, most aspects of your life undergo change, and if you have not given much thought to your estate plan, now is the time to do so.
Estate planning may sound stressful and time-intensive, but you do not need a complicated plan in order for it to be effective. Even a simple estate plan may help you create a lasting legacy for your loved ones and otherwise make important plans for your future. When you become a new parent, consider taking the following simple estate planning steps.
1. Draft a will and appoint a guardian
If you have not yet drafted a will, make sure to do so once you have a child. A will allows you to leave behind assets for your child, but it also serves another important purpose. Your will gives you an opportunity to appoint someone the guardian of your child if you become unable to care for him or her yourself.
2. Revisit your beneficiary designations
You may already have money set aside in retirement accounts by the time you become a parent. If so, you may have already named a beneficiary on your IRA or 401(k). Once you have a son or daughter, you may have reason to revisit your beneficiary designations and update them where necessary.
3. Consider life insurance
If you do not have a life insurance policy, you may want to think about getting one once you become a mother or father. That way, if anything happens to you, your child should have funds available to help him or her get by in your absence.