Indianapolis Family Law Guardianship Lawyer for Children and Adults
A legal guardian is a person who has been ordered by the Court to provide care for a minor child or adult. A guardian is responsible for ensuring that a child’s basic needs are met such as food, clothing, shelter, education, and medical care. In this instance, a guardian acts much like a parent does in ensuring that a child’s best interests are met. A guardian may also be responsible for managing the finances of an individual if they are not capable of doing so, like in the case of a minor child. If the guardian serves in a fiduciary capacity, they are required to file financial reports to the court for review.
One interesting distinction about guardianship is that it can be terminated and reinstated at a later date, unlike other actions such as adoption; which severs all ties between a parent and child. In a guardianship, a minor would still be eligible to receive financial assistance from their parents as well as lay claim to the estate in the event of death.
Guardianship of an adult is similar to that of a child. The guardian is responsible for making decisions about the individual’s medical care and life events. Often guardianship is sought for adults who are incapacitated either by mental illness, drug abuse, or incarceration.
Advances in medical care are making it possible for people to live longer lives. This could increase the need and importance of adult guardianship in the future. The legal action of establishing guardianship over an adult allows a party to make decisions on the person’s behalf if they are deemed incapacitated and unable to care for themselves. The legal guardian can make personal care decisions and may also have fiduciary responsibilities as well. Any time a guardian is responsible for the financial well-being of an individual, they will have a duty to report activity to the court.
The level of responsibility that a guardian has over an individual will vary based on the circumstances and the determination of the court.It’s important to have the legal counsel of an experienced family law attorney to help sort through these complex matters.
If you are interested in obtaining guardianship for have questions pertaining to guardianship laws in Indiana, contact us. Our Indianapolis family law attorneys have handled a variety of guardianship actions and can advise you of your legal rights and options.