19 May Off
Elderly conservatorship or elderly guardianship is a legal relationship formed when an individual is appointed by the court to care for an elderly person who is not in a state to take care of himself or herself. There are some duties and responsibilities of the appointed guardian to the elderly person.
Why An Elder Need A Guardian?
An elderly person may become unable to take care of himself, for example, he might lose the ability to remember to take required medications, manage finances or maintain regular hygiene. In these situations, it may be in the best interests of the elderly person for a court to appoint a guardian.
What is the Process of Guardianship?
There are different processes and requirements of different states. Commonly speaking, the following entities or people can petition a court to appoint a guardian:
- The elderly person can himself file the petition
- A spouse or domestic partner of the elderly person
- A friend of the elderly person
- A relative of the elderly person
- A state or local government agency
The process of guardianship can be long and complex. You may ask a guardianship lawyer to assist you. The process involves:-
- A petition for Guardianship form, is filed, which needs information about the elderly person, the person who is filing the petition, names of the relatives of the elderly person, and the reasons why guardianship is required. Also, the petitioner must explain why alternatives to guardianship are not appropriate.
- The next step is that the elderly person and his or her relatives are informed of the petition for guardianship.
- The court investigator investigates to learn whether the proposed guardianship is necessary.
- The last step is the court hearing in which the judge reviews the petition, hears statements, and decides whether the elderly person lacks the ability to care for himself and decides whether to grant the guardianship petition.
Duties of a Guardian
A guardian is responsible for taking care of the elderly person. In simple terms, it means that the guardian must put the interests of the elderly person first. There are many responsibilities of a guardian, like deciding where the elderly person will live. He is responsible to prepare a budget based on the finances of the elderly person. He decides on the best ways to keep the elderly person healthy. He is also responsible for the arrangement of recreation and social contact of the elder.
Alternatives to guardianship are Powers of Attorneys in which the elderly designates someone who can handle his financial affairs and make healthcare decisions.
There comes a time when guardianship is the only way. You can take the help of a guardianship attorney who will guide you through the whole process.
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