Is a guardianship appropriate for my loved one? Guardianship proceedings are designed to provide safe mechanisms for assistance to prevent the abuse of a vulnerable person. They are also used to alleviate the risks that an incapacitated person may present to himself, herself or to others. Furthermore, they are used to restore the incapacitated individual with the help and financial security that they deserve.
The intent of guardianship law is to accommodate the best interests of the alleged incapacitated person or ward, which is someone who has already been adjudicated as incompetent and to do so in such a way as to preserve as much of the ward’s independence as possible under the particular set of circumstances of that individual.
Guardianship should be considered an extraordinary procedure used only as a last resort when no other mechanisms for support will suffice to protect your loved one. A guardianship is not necessary for every incapacitated person, but those who lack support mechanisms to overcome their incapacity.
A guardianship may be necessary if your loved one is a danger to themselves, such as lacking the ability to be responsible for their cleanliness, their own care or their own personal nutrition. A guardianship may also be necessary for your loved one if they may be in financial danger such as spending funds improperly or making repeated foolish investments due to their incapacity. In this situation, a guardianship may be the only alternative to preserve your loved one’s funds for their lifetime of needs.
A guardianship may also be necessary if there are wrongful fiduciaries or caregivers in place who commit wrongful acts either purposefully to your loved one or potentially in error. In this situation, a guardianship may be the only way to protect them against such malfeasance or misfeasance.
If you believe that a guardianship is appropriate for your loved one, please contact Waller & Mitchell today to set up an appointment to discuss all of your legal needs.