Understanding the role of a guardian

On Behalf of | Oct 26, 2021 | elder law

Setting up a guardianship can be an important part of caring for an older loved one or incapacitated loved one. For that reason, it is helpful to know how to set up a guardianship and what the role and responsibilities of a guardian are.

The important role of a guardian

There are several important responsibilities of a guardian. The responsibilities of a guardian include always acting in the best interests of the incapacitated person they are the guardian for and the guardian should always take thee desires and personal values of the incapacitated person into account when they make decisions on their behalf. The guardian also has the responsibility to update their address or the incapacitated person’s address with the court if there is any change and notify the court if the incapacitated person dies.

A guardianship removes the incapacitated person’s decision-making abilities and places it in the hands of the guardian. The guardian may collect the inactivated person’s Social Security benefits on their behalf but the guardian may not remove the incapacitated person’s healthcare proxy, cannot spend or give away the incapacitated person’s assets or incomes and is not personally responsible for the incapacitated person’s expenses.

A guardianship is approved by the court once a guardianship application is submitted. If the proposed guardian is under investigation for neglecting an incapacitated person or is facing charges for assault and battery injuring a incapacitated person, the court will not approve them as a guardian. Elder law is an area of the law that can help family members care for their older and aging loved ones, including through the establishment of a guardianship, which is why families facing concerns associated with caring for an aging loved one should be familiar with what a guardianship is.