Biological parents and any other holders of full parental rights and responsibilities are considered guardians. Guardians are able to appoint another or more than one person to act as a child’s caregiver(s).

Keep reading to learn more about appointing a guardian using your will from our expert child custody lawyers.


Single Guardians


A parent who is the sole guardian can choose someone to be the guardian of the child, or to care for them, in the event of death. This wish must be added in the parent’s last will and testament. This request will come into operation only if they pass on and the selected guardian accepts this wish.




Parents, whether married, ex-partners or have never been married, are co-guardians as long as both parents have parental rights and responsibilities. This is the rule of thump with the exception of a court having awarded one parent as sole guardian to the exclusion of the other. Upon the death of either parent, the other will become the sole guardian. It is worth keeping in mind that an appointed caregiver or guardian cannot typically replace the surviving parent as guardian.​

As any expert child custody lawyer will tell you, the court will always factor in the child’s best interests as well as their wishes, no matter their stage of development. For instance, if an appointed guardian is proven to be unfit, the court can afford guardianship or care to any other who applies.


In Conclusion


If the surviving parent dies, the guardian they have appointed in their will as the ‘sole natural guardian’ will be granted the care of the child and receive parental rights and responsibilities when he or she accepts this appointment.


Make An Appointment With Expert Child Custody Lawyers


Are you looking for an expert child custody lawyer? Contact The Law Offices of Karen Olivier, a law firm in Durban you can rely on.