The process of guardianship administration addresses the needs of a disabled or incapacitated person who can no longer manage essential day-to-day or financial affairs.
A potential guardian files a petition to become the caretaker of the estate, the person or both. The guardianship may be permanent or temporary, depending on the circumstance.
What authority does a guardian have?
A guardian of a person can make personal, medical and care decisions. In this placement, it is your job to protect the rights and interests of your loved one.
A guardian of an estate manages the person’s funds and assets. When a court appoints you to this position, you handle the incapacitated person’s financial matters.
As a plenary guardian, you have almost unlimited ability to make decisions for the person’s well-being. However, if a judge appoints you as a limited guardian, you have only the controls specified in the court order.
What duties does a guardian have?
As a guardian of a person, you are responsible for:
- Protecting the person’s interest’s and rights
- Planning essential support services
- Including the person in the decision-making process as much as possible
- Respecting the individual’s wishes to the extent feasible in the situation
If you are the guardian of an estate, you handle the finances for the incapacitated person’s benefit. Using the standard of care that you would with your own money, you manage monetary issues, such as:
- Investment portfolios
- Business needs
- Insurance policies
- Selling personal property
A court awards you guardianship when a person needs assistance making critical decisions. In this position, you act solely on behalf of the incapacitated person.