How doI legally insure my children are placed with my brother and his wife if anything happens to me?

UPDATED: Jan 3, 2012

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How doI legally insure my children are placed with my brother and his wife if anything happens to me?

They have separate fathers and I don’t want them separated; my oldest child’s father has nothing to do with her anyway so certainly don’t want her with a stranger. I’m putting together my living Will and my wishes for my children as we speak. I just want to make sure that all the papers I file will stand in court if anything happens to me. Will the father’s have the right to fight for custody even though I have full custody of both of my children?

Asked on January 3, 2012 under Estate Planning, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Yes, the children's fathers will have the right to seek custody--and indeed, ordinarily, the courts would look to place the children, in the event that something happens to you, with their fathers, even if those fathers have not to date had much to do with the children. In cases of manifest unfitness to be parent (e.g. the father is a convicted drug user), the court might elect to not grant him custody, but again, typically, if something happens to the custodial parent, a child will go to the noncustodial parent. You should consult with a family law attorney about this situation and how you can best provide for your children should the worst happen.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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