We’re Adding a New Family Member, Now What?

July 2022 – Contributed by Vantage Financial

Adding a new family member, be it your first child or your next child, can be a stressful yet exciting journey!  To help prepare for this next chapter in your family’s life, we have a few thoughts to consider as time gets closer to their birth or adoption.

Take the time you need off from work to be there for your family. If your employer offers paid maternity leave or paternity leave, do not be shy to take full advantage of those benefits!  Taking care of a newborn child after their time in the hospital or getting an adopted child acclimated to their new home can be a job of its own. Being able to be there for your new child can not only strengthen your bond with them but also could alleviate the stress that potentially could build up welcoming a new family member and working full time.

Review your health insurance coverage and any benefits for maternal and paternal leave. For those who are giving birth, you will have 30 days to enroll your newborn in your health insurance as this is considered a qualifying event, allowing for special enrollment into your current medical coverage.  In some instances, you can also see maternity leave benefits providing coverage for 48 hours of hospital stay after labor.  For those who are choosing to adopt, you can enroll your newly adopted child up to 30 days after placement.  Regardless of birth or adoption, your new child will be able to be covered for health insurance purposes regardless of any pre-existing conditions that could be birth related. 

Start thinking about their future and be ready for all possible outcomes. What type of lifestyle do you want your child to live?  Will they be going to college, or pursuing other career options?  Are we bringing our child up the same way as the last, will we do something differently, or how do we plan on raising our child?  How do we plan on supporting them in the event of any complications, and how can we ensure they are living their best life?  While all these questions have a strong likelihood of having different answers and even changing over time, these are some questions you and your spouse should talk through, especially if it is your first child.  Regardless, the best way to combat the unknown is to start early and diversify.  If both parents feel there is a very strong likelihood of their newborn or newly adopted child going to college, establishing a 529 account for their college savings can help you take advantage of tax deferred growth without having to dip into your own retirement savings.  Alternatively, establishing an UTMA or UGMA for them could not only help save for their future, but also introduce them to the world of investing so they can be better prepared once they take over their assets within the account.

Even though we don’t have that crystal ball to look into the future either, we still can help plan for your first or next child.  Not only are we able to review your current employer benefits and insurance coverage to see what updates may need to be made to accommodate for your new child, but we can also model the support you plan to give your child throughout their lives in your plan, allowing you and your child to have the most successful outcome available.  Whether it’s planning to fund their education, to making sure your child is taken care of in the event something happens to you or your spouse, we are here to provide the guidance you need to set your child up for a successful future.

This material is for informational purposes only.  It is not a recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell any securities.  Vantage Financial is not a tax advisor; please consult your tax advisor prior to making any investment decisions.  Vantage Financial is an Investment Advisory Firm registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”).  SEC registration does not imply any particular level of skill or expertise.