…and their parents assigned a guardian in their will?
I stumbled across a website that advised people to have wills, especially parents. This, they reassured the parents reading, would assure that their wishes about the child’s guardianship would be honored (unless you’re trying to keep the kid from a bio parent, but I’m thinking of cases where both have died and guardianship is left to family or friends). Nothing about how their choice assumes guardianship, though. I couldn’t find anything more by googling the topic either. I can’t find anything that fills in what happens between parents die --> child lives with new family. Now of course, this will bother me until someone explains.
So, what happens if the couple dies, and their child is not with them? Perhaps they’re at school and their folks had an accident. And with the way families are scattered across the country, the child might not be near family either - so who cares for him then, before he can be turned over to their intended guardian? Whose job is it to give the child to a guardian, the police, or social services? Even if there’s someone near to care for him, aren’t wills customarily read after a funeral? Around here that’s up to three days post-death. Does someone get to care for the child before the will’s read, or is the child put into the foster system until it’s worked out?
And what happens after the will is read, and the intended guardian says they’ll assume custody of the child? Is court involved in every case, or is that more for when they decide to adopt the child? (I’m under the impression that being a guardian is different from being a parent, legally). If you do need to see a judge to be made a legal guardian, how long does that sort of thing take? Can the child be enrolled in school, gotten health insurance etc before things are made legal? Does the prospective guardian have to do anything besides fill out paperwork?