Guardianship Frequently Asked Questions

At Brown Law LLC, we understand that you may have questions about guardianship. Our attorneys in Salt Lake City can help you understand your specific situation and explain how we can assist in your case.

Want to learn more about guardianships in Utah? Listed below are some frequently asked questions about guardianships and our answers.

Who Is A Guardian?

A guardian is a person whom the court appoints to manage certain affairs for a child under age 18, or an adult who has been determined not to have the ability to manage these affairs for themselves.

When Is A Guardian Necessary?

Different guardians are appointed by the court when parents are deceased or determined incapable of making choices for their children, or when an adult is deemed incapable of managing some or all of their own affairs. Simply being disabled does not mean an adult needs a guardian. It must be demonstrated that they lack the capacity to make decisions in a number of different areas including health care, living arrangements, education, financial matters, and care of minors they may be legally responsible for.

In order to appoint a guardian for an adult, it must be determined that the individual is incapacitated, the guardian is qualified, the guardianship itself will protect the individual and help to keep them safe.

What Types Of Guardianships Are Available?

A person may need a guardian for different areas of their lives. They may be considered "incapacitated" in one area, but may be fully qualified to handle their own care in another.

Guardianship of the person oversees the physical and emotional well-being of the person they are guardian of. They will be called on to make decisions regarding health care, releasing confidential information, when necessary, and placement in a residential facility.

Guardianship of the estate oversees the person's financial interests, including any income, inheritance, property, or real estate that they own.

A Limited Guardianship

A limited guardianship looks at the individual capabilities of a person or the prospective guardian, and a court order will outline specifics where a guardian is necessary and when it is not. For example, a person may be qualified to make everyday financial decisions, such as buying groceries or personal items, but will not have the mental capability to understand making financial investments. In this case the individual may need a guardian for major financial decisions only.

Who Can Serve As A Guardian?

Many states tend to prefer that guardians be related to the individual or that they have some established relationship whenever possible. However, this is not a requirement for serving as a guardian. It is most important that they are over the age of 18, and can make the decisions for the person they are serving as guardian for with the best interests of that person in mind.

Because of this, convicted felons and those who have been determined to need a guardian themselves should not serve as a guardian for another person. Some people serve as guardians professionally, an institution, either public or private may also be appointed as a guardian if they are not providing services where they may benefit from depending on the decisions they make for the person they are guardian for. Financial institutions sometimes act as guardians for matters related to a person's estate.

Contact Us To Get Your Specific Questions Answered

Our lawyers can guide you through this process. Call us at 801.528.9697 or toll free at 800.656.3260, or contact us online to get answers about your specific guardianship-related concerns. We offer free consultations, and our attorneys speak Spanish and Italian.