We have worked with many families whose loved ones are no longer or never were able to care for themselves due to developmental disabilities, disease, or injury. We are sensitive to the emotional distress of those called upon to seek guardianship recognize this responsibility can be made more difficult by conflicting emotions and a complicated judicial process.
Guardians have different levels of authority depending on the limitations of the ward. Some people require guardianship for both their person and their estate. Estate guardianship grants authority over an incapacitated person’s property and/or financial affairs. In the event that a person is in immediate danger, the court may grant temporary guardianship for up to sixty days. The court may also initiate guardianship procedures if they are notified that a county resident appears to be incapacitated and is experiencing abuse, self-neglect or exploitation.
Placing a person under guardianship removes many civil liberties that citizens in America enjoy. The ward loses the right to manage his or her own affairs; to choose where they want to live; to consent and/or refuse medical treatment; and even the rights to vote and to drive. Because these rights are so significant, Courts requires substantial evidence and documentation to substantiate incapacitation. This is a complex process that requires the skill and experience of a qualified guardianship lawyer.