Guardianships generally fall into two categories. A senior who is incapable of making their own decisions, and a minor who needs court supervision.
We strongly encourage our clients to have proper estate plan documents in place BEFORE you might need them. If you wait to have a Power of Attorney executed, then a guardianship
is necessary. It is a court process whereby the court deems the senior is "incapacitated" and usually an adult child becomes the guardian.
What are the tell tale signs for a guardian?
Is the senior mishandling their finances?
Is there significant weight loss or eating habit changes?
Is there personal hygiene issues?
If these issues are present, then it is probably tine to have a guardian appointed by the court.
We generally handle guardianships for minors when a minor is getting a large settlement, greater than $15,000. The Florida Legislature mandates that a guardian is appointed to protect the interests of the minor. It is not an overly complicated process, but it does take a few months.
Duties of Guardian
The primary duty of the appointed Guardian is to maintain the best interests of the Ward. This generally includes having the Ward's monies placed into a restricted bank account and notification and approval from the Court when monies are used. We work out a monthly budget with our clients, and submit a request once to the Court to meet the regular monthly needs of the Ward.