Contested Guardianship

Contested Guardianship

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How complicated is Guardianship?

The initial stages of a Guardianship usually require four months to complete.  That timeframe and the complexity of the case vary based on several factors, including whether the case is:

 • Contested or Uncontested
 • Plenary or Limited
 • Requested on a Emergency Temporary basis or within the standard schedule

However, the resulting Guardianship lasts until the Ward’s death unless the Ward regains adequate capacity to resume control of their own rights.  Guardians serve for the duration of the Guardianship or until the Guardian’s resignation, removal or death.  Usually a Guardian’s ongoing responsibilities become routine and are quite manageable, but as a Ward encounters life’s complications their Guardian’s role can become more complex.  

Who usually is appointed to serve as Guardian?

The person appointed to exercise a Ward’s rights (referred to as the “Guardian”) is often the Ward’s spouse, an adult child or another close relative.  Regardless of their relationship to the Ward, all proposed Guardians must pass a thorough background check.  When necessary, the Court may appoint a professional guardian who serves numerous Wards for a nominal hourly fee.