Over the last few weeks, our blog has dedicated some time to exploring more about Florida's guardianship process, meaning the legal procedure through which a person is appointed by the court to oversee the care of an incapacitated person.
In today's post, we'll conclude this discussion, exploring both the permanency of guardianships and guardianships for minors.
One of the more common questions to arise in the context of guardianships is whether they are considered permanent.
In general, a guardianship may be terminated whenever the guardian is found to have failed to meet their duties or has otherwise become ineligible. It can also be terminated if the guardian chooses to resign from their position and provides the court with the necessary notice.
As far as the person who is the subject of the guardianship is concerned -- i.e., the ward -- in the event that they recover in whole or even in part from their otherwise incapacitating condition, they may file a petition with the court requesting the restoration of their rights.
In these scenarios, the court will order the ward to undergo another examination and, based on the results, decide whether to restore either all or a portion of their rights.
When it comes to minors, the law dictates -- perhaps not surprisingly -- that a child's parents are their natural guardian. Furthermore, parents may either designate a trusted individual to serve as guardian in their will or file a written declaration with the local clerk of court accomplishing the same objective.
It's important to note that the law also mandates that a guardian of minor children will need to be appointed in the following circumstances:
- Both parents have either perished or are otherwise incapacitated
- The child receives proceeds from a lawsuit, insurance policy or inheritance in excess of $15,000
If you have questions or concerns about guardianships, planning for incapacity or the execution of other estate planning tools, please consider taking the time to meet with an experienced legal professional to learn more.