Caring. Compassionate. Collaborative.

Through A Guardianship, I Can Help You Care For Your Loved One

For any family that is forced to explore establishing a guardianship, it is an emotionally difficult experience. You are in a very challenging time, and I want to help you by guiding you through this period so that you can do what is best for your family. I assist families in establishing voluntary and involuntary guardianships for both minors as well as adults, and I can help your family as it goes through these complex proceedings.

Understand What A Guardianship Is

For Floridians, establishing a guardianship is a process by which a legal guardian is appointed for an individual who is incapacitated and requires someone to exercise their legal rights on their behalf. This can be an adult or minor whom a court has established does not have the mental or physical capacity to take care of themselves and their property or to care for their health and safety.

A legal guardian is someone who can make decisions on behalf of the incapacitated individual, usually, this is a person, but it can be an institutional caretaker, and they can make personal as well as financial decisions. Once an incapacitated person has a legal guardian, they are sometimes referred to as their ward.

Adult Guardianships In Florida

For adults who are put through the guardianship process in Florida, the court will usually examine that individual’s mental abilities to determine whether they are too impaired and require another person to make decisions for them. This is not something the court will do lightly, as guardianships are only appropriate when no other alternative that would be less burdensome on the individual in question exists. Some other alternatives can include durable powers of attorney, placing their assets into a trust and establishing an advanced directive with a health care surrogate.

The actual process for measuring capacity is a technical one and requires the court to establish a panel of three experts, two of which must be physicians who can form an opinion as to the individual’s mental capacity and one of whom must be an expert in the form of mental incapacity alleged.

Minor Guardianships In Florida

For minors, there are different circumstances that can trigger a guardianship. Florida law requires that a guardian shall be appointed for minors when their parents have passed away or have otherwise become incapacitated, or if the minor has inherited a large number of assets, received benefits from an insurance policy or has received damages from a lawsuit. State statutes provide the exact amounts that can trigger these guardianships.

Know The Difference Between Voluntary And Involuntary Guardianships

In Florida, there are two forms of guardianship which can be established, voluntary and involuntary. A voluntary guardianship can be established by an adult who, although mentally capable, is unable to manage their own funds or assets, and they request that a guardian be appointed. An involuntary guardianship may be established when a person files a petition with the appropriate court to establish that their family member is mentally incapable of managing themselves or their property.

Contact My Office Today If You Have Guardianship Questions

If you believe that a guardianship may be useful for your family, then you can connect with me to get answers for your questions. Call my office at 305-928-6999 or complete my online contact form to schedule a consultation with me.