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What is the role of a guardian?

On Behalf of | Apr 3, 2024 | Estate Planning |

When you become incapacitated or unable to make sound decisions regarding your personal care or finances, you might need guardianship to address your needs. Guardianship provides a legal arrangement granting a chosen individual the authority to make those decisions on your behalf.

There are several things to know about the role of guardianship in your estate plan.

What is a guardian?

A guardian is a person appointed by you or the court to make decisions if you become incapable of managing your own affairs due to age, illness or disability. The guardian’s primary role is to act in your best interests.

What are your options for guardianship?

There are two main types of guardianship for adults. You can opt for guardianship of your person, which allows your guardian to make decisions about your personal care, including your living arrangements, daily needs and healthcare. Alternatively, you might need guardianship for your estate. This assigns a guardian for your financial affairs, including your investments, bills and assets. You can also appoint the same guardian for both roles.

How do you appoint a guardian?

You can appoint a guardian as part of your estate plan, and file it with the court to award them the authority to act on your behalf. The court can also assign someone if you become incapacitated without advanced planning.

Understanding the role and responsibilities of a guardian is important for those considering this legal arrangement. Proactive efforts to cover your future needs can help you minimize uncertainty for the future.