As your loved ones age, they may need to be placed into a guardianship. Sometimes, this may also be called a conservatorship. A Guardian, or Conservator, is someone or someones, who are placed by the court to take care of financial and medical matters for the incapacitated person. In some instances, one person may be appointed to take care of both Estate & Personal matters. Guardianships are typically appointed for individuals who are in comas, suffering from advanced Alzheimer's disease, or have other serious illnesses or injuries. If you or your loved one is of an advancing age or suffering from an illness and would like to avoid a Guardianship, you can appoint a power of attorney. This will help ensure that a trusted person is able to make decisions and get information.
There are two primary types of Guardianship one should be aware of:
Temporary Legal Guardianship: This type of guardianship requires no court approval. A temporary guardianship goes into effect when all required parties sign the agreed to document. These documents typically expire after six months, unless another date is agreed upon.
Permanent Legal Guardianship: This court appointed position is given to a person to oversee decision making, health, finances, hygiene, and any other aspects one may need to protect them. This position is typically given to family or friends, however, anyone may apply.
In order to end a Permanent Legal Guardianship, which can only be done by the court, one of four things may have to happen:
- Conservatee passes away
- Conservatee no longer needs assistance
- Conservatees assets are greatly diminished, or gone (this applies only to Financial Conservatorship)
- Conservator resigns, can no longer handle responsibilities. In a case like this the conservatorship does not end, but is transferred to another individual(s)
If you or a loved one is in need of a Guardianship, please contact our knowledgeable team of elder law attorneys today to ensure that you receive the best guidance possible.