Types of Guardianship


A guardianship can be temporary or “permanent”. Normally, a guardianship lasts until a ward becomes an adult, regains capacity or dies. A temporary guardianship should be requested only in the event of an emergency. A hearing for the appointment of a temporary guardian must be held within 10 days of application. Ultimately, a further hearing must be held to determine if guardianship is necessary if a temporary guardianship is created.

The court must find the degree to which a ward is incapacitated and it must be based on the medical testimony of neurologist or psychiatrist. The Court may find that a ward is competent to retain some rights and powers. There are slightly different findings of fact or other requirements necessary for creation of a guardianship for a minor, an adult, or for an adult over age 65.

A Guardian of the Estate must make an annual report (account) to the Court as to the existing assets, funds received and disbursed, which must be reviewed and approved by the Court before the Letters of Guardianship can be renewed.

In similar fashion, a Guardian of the Person is required to report on the condition of the Ward annually. Statutory Probate Courts have investigators who will check on the condition of the Ward in person.