What You Need to Know About Guardianship in Florida

When a person is incapacitated or unable to care for their own legal matters, another individual may be assigned guardianship. Guardians are individuals assigned by Florida courts. They oversee the well-being of an incapacitated person or a minor.

Guardianship often entails the management of the incapacitated person’s assets or property. Many life circumstances can result in the need for a guardian. If you have legal questions regarding guardianship in Florida, it’s important to speak with an attorney in Daytona Beach.

Types of Volusia County Guardianship

There are several types of guardianship that can be established under Florida state law. The most common type of Volusia County guardianship is for adults suffering from an incapacity, such as dementia.

However, other types of guardianship exist. For example, a minor may have a significant inheritance and need assistance ensuring the security of their assets. Florida state law requires minors to have a guardian handle large amounts of money for them.

In an emergency, the courts may establish temporary guardianship for someone who has become incapacitated unexpectedly. Temporary guardians typically have authority for a few months while permanent guardianship is established. This legal process generally takes a few weeks to complete.

How to Establish Guardianship in Florida

Establishing guardianship in Volusia County, Florida, involves engagement with the local courts. The person seeking guardianship must first file a petition with the court.

This petition must detail the mental and physical condition of the person for whom the petitioner is seeking guardianship. This person is known as the alleged incapacitated person, or AIP.

The petitioner must submit a written oath to promise they will handle the AIP’s estate in a legal manner. The courts also require an application with details that include the petitioner’s:

  • Work history
  • Educational experience and training
  • Background information

Speaking with a skilled attorney in Florida will ensure that you submit all the required paperwork if you’re seeking guardianship. After this paperwork is filed, the court will appoint a legal professional to inform the incapacitated person about the guardianship.

In some cases, the process will require a medical examination to establish the need for guardianship.

What Does a Guardianship Entail?

When a Florida court rules that an individual is completely incapacitated, the court may appoint a trustworthy person as a plenary guardian. This person wields full decision-making power over the incapacitated person, who is known as the ward.

A plenary guardian can take the following actions on behalf of their ward:

  • Entering legal contracts
  • Defending lawsuits and filing claims
  • Determining the ward’s place of residence
  • Accepting or declining medical treatment
  • Managing and selling property
  • Applying for public benefits

These are only a few examples of the rights bestowed on a plenary guardian in Florida. If you have questions about the role of guardianship in your case, reach out to a knowledgeable legal professional.

When you are seeking guardianship for an AIP, a skilled guardianship attorney can walk you through the process and represent you at required hearings.

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