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What is Guardianship?

A guardianship of the person provides legal and physical custody of a child to someone other than a parent. Guardianships are an option when circumstances no longer allow the parents to care for their child. These circumstances can include: physical illness, addiction, military deployment, etc.

While legal guardians are very often close relatives of the child such as grandparents, siblings, aunts/uncles, they do not have to be related. Legal guardians are granted many of the same rights and responsibilities as a parent, although you will be supervised to some extent by the Court.

In order to become a guardian you must file papers with the court and go through a number of steps leading up the court hearing. It is advisable to have an attorney to guide you through the rigorous paperwork, filing ad service requirements. The court does not require and attorney but mistakes completing the court forms and giving “formal notice” to all relatives is common without an attorney, as the forms and rules for notice are complicated. If not followed carefully it can result in having to go back to court and taking longer to process your case. An attorney can help you present your case to the court, especially if one or both parents object to the guardianship.

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Types of Guardianship

Guardianship Of The Person

A guardian of the person has legal custody and responsibility for the minor, and a guardian of the minor’s estate has legal responsibility to manage the minor’s assets. A guardianship is not an adoption and is not as permanent a relationship. However, by obtaining a guardianship, you will have the responsibility of caring for all of the minor’s needs including: food, shelter, health care, education, and emotional and physical well-being until age 18.

Guardianship Of The Estate

A guardianship of the estate occurs when a minor has acquired substantial assets (typically an inheritance), and an individual needs to be appointed to protect those assets. This guardian is typically a surviving parent. A guardianship of the estate manages a child’s income, money, and/or property (real or personal) until the child turns 18. The guardian of an estate is held to a very high standard of care known as the “fiduciary duty.”

How we can help?

Empowering People With Choices & Options

When life changes, Law Office of Kristine M Borgia is here to help. Easily accessible and readily available to help the minute you need it; we can be trusted to guide you through the legal process ahead. When it comes to establishing or enforcing a guardianship, you have options and we are here to ensure you have the information you need to make the best decision for your situation.

As a collaborative law practice, we do not rely on just one attorney to handle a case. Instead, we involve many partners in the process in order to yield the best results for our clients. We encourage you to contact us today to learn more about our practice and how we may be of assistance in your case.

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At the Law Office of Kristine M. Borgia, we give solid and intelligent guidance that spans foreign and local concerns across a broad variety of business and estate planning disciplines by taking the time to genuinely listen as well as advise.