Sometimes elderly people reach a point in life where they can no longer take care of themselves. They may have physical or cognitive decline. Family members may be concerned about their safety but not willing to admit them into a nursing home. Guardianship is an option for individuals who want to take care of their elderly relatives. Filing for guardianship can be complex and lengthy. However, it ensures the safety of seniors. It involves becoming legally responsible for the elderly individual. The guardian will legally be able to access the ward's finances and make medical decisions for them. This means that they have legal rights to make decisions for the elderly individual. The following points identify a few things to expect.
Documentation of Health
The first part of a guardianship case for the elderly involves getting medical documentation of their health. This evidence can be a letter from their physician or a physician's certificate. Some seniors have cognitive issues that may make it difficult or impossible for them to submit to a medical examination. However, the paperwork must be completed as proof. Minor dementia may make it possible for them to agree to guardianship or deny it. Some seniors may be defiant and declare that they can take care of themselves and refuse guardianship. The court would then make a court order for them to get a mandatory evaluation.
File for Guardianship
This can be done even if the senior refuses to agree to guardianship. The court will start the proceedings and determine if the individual filing for guardianship is fit. They will want to know about the guardian's finances, criminal background, and ability to take care of the elderly individual.
Notify Other Relatives
Sometimes it becomes a matter of conflict when other family members find out that one individual is filing for guardianship. However, legally they must be informed. This usually applies to immediate family members who can easily be contacted.
The ward will be appointed an attorney by the state. Even if they cannot communicate, a lawyer will be appointed to represent them. Individuals seeking guardianship will need to have their own guardianship lawyer if they want representation.
A guardianship lawyer is a good resource to use to learn more about guardianship. They can help potential guardians navigate the court system by filing paperwork on their behalf. If the process is not done correctly, it can cause delays. The elderly individual can live with the guardian during the legal process. The purpose of claiming guardianship is to protect the ward's rights and ensure that the guardian is protected too. Elderly individuals who do not have cognitive issues can likely.
For more information, contact a guardianship lawyer near you.