Can I appoint someone in my will to look after my child when I die?
You can nominate someone in your will as a 'testamentary guardian' of your child. A testamentary guardian will be able to make decisions about the long term care of the child such as education or religion. Appointing a testamentary guardian does not necessarily mean that your child will live with that person if you die.
When can the testamentary guardian have the daily care of my child?
A testamentary guardian will only have the daily care of your child if the other parent is dead and there are no family court or federal magistrates court orders in place saying who your child is to live with. If there is a dispute after you die between relatives or the other parent and the testamentary guardian, the Family Court or Federal Circuit Court can resolve disputes about where your child should live.
What if the other parent is still alive?
When a testamentary guardian is appointed they will share their obligations with another surviving parent and any other existing guardian.
An existing guardian or surviving parent may apply to the supreme court to cancel the appointment of a testamentary guardian. You should get legal advice.