Do you need help setting up guardianship to protect a family member or loved one? Guardianship law is a legal process designed to execute the rights of a person who is deemed incapacitated and can no longer make their own decisions. Guardianship settles conflicts arising from this situation that have not been planned for in advance through the use of a living will, durable financial power of attorney, or health care power of attorney. These documents direct decisions made by caregivers, designated health care representatives, or other agents and avoid guardianship proceedings.
Our attorneys explain the process of obtaining guardianship and advise you on the types of legal and welfare decisions you can make as a legal guardian. Whether you need guidance with paperwork or representation once the guardian is appointed, our lawyers ensure you know your legal rights.
Why hire an attorney for Guardianship Law?
Our guardianship attorneys generally see two types of cases. First, some involve the unfortunate situation where parents can’t adequately care for a minor child. Circumstances regarding addictions often play a role in many of these cases, as do death, abandonment, abuse, or neglect.
Second, other cases may involve an adult (over the age of 18) who is found to be physically or mentally incapacitated and unable to take care of themselves, either temporarily or permanently. Incapacity can be brought about by illness or accident and is determined by the court. An experienced attorney helps establish a diagnosis with clear and convincing evidence through professional examination of physical, mental, and functional health assessments.
Guardianship may also be needed when a person is taken advantage of by others. There are many cases where close relatives, friends, or caretakers attempt to wrongfully influence an incapacitated person to gain control over their assets. This is known as undue influence. In these situations, a court can appoint a temporary guardian and immediately restrain or freeze an incapacitated person’s bank accounts or other assets to preserve them until the court can have a full hearing.
Each of these situations requires experienced legal representation. The law allows the court to appoint someone to make legal and welfare decisions for these individuals. Depending on the case, a legal guardian may be appointed as a limited decision-maker or an all-purpose decision-maker. For example, nursing home residents may need a general legal guardian to make decisions about their overall welfare, while a person receiving in-home care has a guardian that focuses on specific bills that need to be paid.
Drescher & Cheslow estate planning lawyers patiently advise you about the appropriate legal guardianship for your particular circumstances. We also help fill out and submit related forms and legal paperwork, representing the guardian in court once one is appointed. Unlike larger firms that can seem impersonal, we offer dedicated attorneys and a team of friendly staff members who work closely with you to identify goals and pursue objectives. We achieve the best outcome for your needs when representing you during guardianship proceedings. Our dedicated firm makes every effort to accomplish the highest quality results and service.
Contact us if you have any questions!