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“We are all aging, but unfortunately, I cannot say with confidence that if any one of us becomes incapacitated that a robust system is in place to protect our person and our financial assets.” Senator Gordon H. Smith
When Is Guardianship The Right Choice
In uncertain times like these the Senators comments ring true in the minds of us all as we age and ponder a future time when we too may need a caring hand. Should you have to make the difficult decision for yourself, a love one or a friend because they have been judged to lack the capacity or unable to manage their own affairs due to mental or physical incapacity that could be the moment you consider a guardian.
What is Professional Guardianship
Guardianship is the management of the affairs of someone who has been judged by the court to lack the capacity or self control to manage some or all of their rights concerning their person, property or both. Generally, guardianship is ordered by a court on behalf of someone who is called a ward of the court.
Looking to Family First
Your first option for guardianship should always be a spouse, family member or a close friend with the time and ability to serve as guardian. However when no such person is available or able to serve then and only then should you ask the courts to appoint a Professional Guardian.
Qualified Professional Guardians Are Appointed By The Courts
Courts appoints guardian to assumes the rights of the person (who they call a ward) to make decisions about many aspects of daily life of the person. A guardian is directed by ethics, state and federal statute, to make decisions in the best interest of the ward. Additionally guardians takes an oath to act in the best interest of the ward and are subject to penalty of law and imprisonment for proven misconduct.
The Professional Guardianship Solution
It is important to note that professional guardianship should always be the choice of last resort. However when it is the right solution it offers a productive device to protect those most vulnerable in our society.
A professional guardian will consider the wishes and desires of family, friends and love ones while making decisions in the best interest of the person who has been adjudicated incapacitated. Professional guardianship may be in the form of guardian of person, property or both.
Guardianship of the Person
When the court appoints a guardian of the person, the guardian may have the following responsibilities:
- Determine and monitor residence.
- Consent to and monitor medical treatment.
- Consent and monitor non-medical services such as education, social activities and counseling and possible restoration of capacity where possible.
- Make end-of-life decisions with court approval.
- Maximize independence in least restrictive manner.
- Report to the court about the guardianship status annually.
Guardianship of the Estate or Property
Management of estate, real and personal property, tangible and intangible including anything that may be the subject of ownership. When the court appoints a guardian of the estate, the guardian is assigned the responsibilities of:
- Marshall and protect assets, inventorying assets.
- Obtain appraisals of property, to determine their value when necessary.
- Protect property and assets from loss.
- Receive and preserve income for the estate.
- Make appropriate disbursements on behalf of the ward.
Choosing AgeCARE as Your Professional Guardianship Service Provider
AgedCare is managed by a team of dedicated professions with over 20 years experience caring for people in need. Our purpose is to serve the needs of families and their loved one in cases where professional guardianship is the right choice. We believe the needs of the ward are best served by close coordination with their families who know their wishes and desires best.
AgedCARE is 501(c)(3) Non-profit Guardianship Company, a subsidiary of the Hartage Family Foundation. Our purpose is to be a resource for families by providing limited and plenary guardianship care for incapacitated persons and persons with developmental disabilities.
- AgedCARE is a Licensed Professional Guardianship Company, State of Florida
- Member the Florida State Guardianship Association
- Member the National Guardianship Association
- Registered with the Florida Department of Elder Affairs