What is a Guardian?

Certain situations may make an individual unable to care for him or herself for any number of reasons, e.g., physical incapacity, illness, and mental health issues. These situations necessitate the establishment of a guardianship and appointment of a Guardian. A Guardian, therefore, is a substitute decision maker for a person in need.

Most Guardians are appointed for elderly persons who are incapacitated to some extent. Often, a developmentally disabled person needs a Guardian when he or she becomes eighteen (18) years old.

Also, a minor child with no surviving parents may require the designation of a Guardian.

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