Whenever a parent, grandparent or spouse becomes mentally incapacitated or no longer competent, a Guardian of the Person or Estate may need to be appointed by the Court to make decisions regarding the person’s care, placement out of the home or their finances. Many times, a Guardianship may be avoided by a person having a Durable Power of Attorney for finances and a Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare, also known as a Living Will. The term “Durable” means that even though a person, who is competent when signing these documents, may later become mentally incompetent, these Powers of Attorney would be valid throughout the person’s incompetency, and should be valid up to the person’s death. I have many years of experience in preparing these Powers of Attorney, and would be more than happy to sit down and discuss your personal situation so that you may plan for the future.
However, if a Guardianship is the only solution, I have the experience necessary to prepare all of the paperwork to give proper notice and petition the Court to have a Guardian appointed. A Guardianship may be necessary where a minor child may inherit assets or if an unfortunate situation occurs where a minor child loses its parents. Also, a mentally disabled child reaching the age of 17 ½ years may also need to have a parent appointed as a Guardian by the Courts so that disability or other available benefits may be applied for, an out of home placement be necessary, or medical decisions may need to be made for the child when he or she reaches adulthood. Feel free to contact me with questions regarding the need for a Guardianship, or the simple ways of avoiding it.