Guardianship Law Overview

Guardianship Law

Miami guardianship attorney Randy A. Bryant has over a decade of experience guiding families through the guardianship process. At the Bryant Law Firm, we understand that guardianship can be a very sensitive process requiring thoughtful legal advocacy. We have worked with many families throughout the Miami and the South Florida region, and are poised to provide you with the effective legal representation you need, while also lending a caring hand.

Florida Guardianship

Guardianship is a legal proceeding that is used to appoint a guardian to exercise the legal rights of a person who has been deemed incapacitated. Questions of guardianship typically arise when an individual is no longer able to care for him or herself, but has not designated who should care for them under such circumstances. The individual who may be appointed by the court to take care of them and protect their best interests is a guardian. A guardian may be an individual, such as a family member, or an institution like a nonprofit or a bank trust department. Within Florida, any person who has been convicted of a felony may not serve as a guardian, and the court is prohibited from appointing a guardian where a conflict of interest might occur.

A guardian may be appointed to exercise some (limited) or all (plenary) of an individual’s rights. The guardianship may be of the person, property or both. A guardian of property is charged with compiling all relevant property, investing it prudently with a focus on supporting the incapacitated individual and providing detailed reports of such activity to the court. The guardian of a person is required to exercise those rights which were removed by the court on behalf of the incapacitated individual, including medical, mental, and personal care, and must report such activities to the court.

Who May Need A Guardian?

The need for a guardian and a guardianship determination may arise in many different circumstances. Mentally ill individuals may require a guardian once they reach 18 years of age to handle their affairs if they have been determined to be incapacitated. Similarly, elderly individuals suffering from Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s may become incapacitated and require a guardian. Additionally, guardianship for minors may also be needed in special circumstances. A child may require a guardian if his or her parents die suddenly or if the state deems them to be unfit parents. Guardianship for a minor is also required under Florida law when a child receives an inheritance or the proceeds of a lawsuit or insurance policy that are in excess of $15,000.

Alternatives to Guardianship

If you or a loved one would like to avoid the complications of a guardianship process, you may appoint an individual to govern your affairs in the case of incapacity through a living will or a durable power of attorney. This appointment, if properly conducted, will be respected by the court and allow you to avoid a guardianship process altogether.

Successfully Anticipating Guardianship

Preparing for life’s unexpected twists and turns is a fundamental aspect of properly providing for our loved ones, relatives, and children. Although it can often be difficult to think about, it is important to acknowledge the possibility that we may one day become incapacitated, or face the difficulty of dealing with an incapacitated family member. South Florida guardianship lawyer Randy A. Bryant has guided individuals through these difficult moments since 1998, and knows how important quality legal representation can be to the guardianship process. Whether you would like to appoint a guardian to take care of you should the need arise, or need assistance with a court guardianship process, the Bryant Law Firm is here to help you. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your guardianship matters, call us at (305) 456-2777, or contact us online.

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