There are several cases where a court may deem it necessary to place a
child, elderly person, or a someone with special needs, under the care
of a guardian. Here are a few things you might want to know before assuming
the role of a guardian.
A guardian has many of the same responsibilities as a parent. Sometimes
the courts place a person, or child, under the care of a guardian because
he or she is deemed unable to provide for his or herself. This means that
the guardian handles housing, food, education, and any extra care, that
the dependent needs. If the dependent has received an inheritance, the
guardian is also responsible for managing the estate until the court deems
the involvement of the guardian to be no longer necessary. In some cases, like in
Juvenile Court Guardianship, the guardian is also financially responsible for the dependent.
Guardianship Vs. Adoption
Guardianship and adoption may seem similar, but they are actually very different in the eyes of
the court. For example, if you were appointed to become the guardian of
a child, the parents may still have the opportunity to be a part of the
child's life. In an adoption the parental rights are given up to the
adopters. In both cases, one is expected to provide for all the child's
needs. However, a guardian may be monitored by the courts to make sure
the needs of the dependent are met. Either path can be a life changing
decision that should considered thoughtfully.
A Lawyer Can Help
In many guardianship cases there is a lot of heartbreak. The complex legal
process of guardianship can add to the emotional burden. A lawyer can
help a potential guardian meet all of the duties, fiduciary and otherwise,
that are entailed in guardianship. It never hurts to have someone looking
out for your best interests.
If you need help finding a path that is right for you and your loved ones,
contact us at the Law Offices of James C. Shields. We want to help.