Like many of those who have elderly loved ones living in Miami, you may agree with the decision to place your aging family member or friend under the care of a guardian. However, the circumstances of your loved one's case may leave him or her as a ward of a public guardian. Many come to us here at The Law Offices of Frye & Vazquez, P.L. after family members or friends have been placed in such a situation. If this describes your case, you likely share their concern regarding what accountability the court places on such a professional.
You may be pleased to hear that the court recognizes that the best scenario for your incapacitated loved one may be to be in the care of one he or she is familiar with. Thus, according to Section 744.2103(4) of the Florida State Statutes, it requires that the public guardian make substantial efforts to find such a person or party to pass the role on to. That may be you, another family member or friend, or a bank or corporation with which your loved one has established ties. The public guardian must also submit a report detailing his or her efforts in this regard within six months of his or her date of appointment.
While tasked with your loved one's care, a public guardian (or his or her agent) must visit him or her at least quarterly to monitor factors such as:
- His or her physical appearance and well-being
- His or her living conditions
- His or her need for additional services and assistance
On top of that, a public guardian's handling of your loved one's financial affairs is to be audited by a qualified public accountant every two years. More information on the rules regulating guardian conduct can be found here on our site.