PLEASE NOTE: We are able to fully assist you during these difficult times. We are offering our clients and prospective clients the ability to meet with us via telephone or through video conferencing. Please call our office at 914-948-1500 so that we may assist you.

We are pleased to announce the reopening of our White Plains office location for in-office meetings. We are following the applicable New York State regulations for Phase 2 re-openings. These regulations limit in-person gatherings, so although we will hold a select number of in-person meetings, we will continue to encourage telephone and video-conference meetings whenever possible. We have implemented health and safety procedures for all staff, as well as those clients who come into the office. Please click here for in-office meeting procedures.

Elder Planning Isn't Just For The Elderly

Choosing a guardian for an aging or disabled individual

As most readers understand, parents are responsible for the health and well-being of their children until those children reach the age of adulthood. At that time, children may begin to make their own decisions and be held accountable for their own legal actions. In New York and jurisdictions throughout the country, adulthood is generally recognized when a child reaches the age of 18 years.

However, sometimes adults require assistance and supervision even after they have attained their 18th birthdays. Adults who are unable to make decisions for themselves due to age or infirmity may require guardians to provide them with support so that they may continue to live their lives. Past posts on this blog have discussed what guardians may do; this post will address how a guardian may be selected to provide support for an aging or disabled person.

In most cases, courts will seek the input of individuals to find out who they would like their guardians to be. If a person’s chosen guardian is sufficient then a court may appoint that person to provide support and care. If, however, a person cannot express their opinion regarding the guardian of their choice then a court may look to testamentary documents like powers of attorney and wills to glean information on whom the individual may have wanted to provide them with care.

When no information can be found to identify a person’s chosen guardian, a court must select someone who can meet the needs of their aging or disabled ward. Guardianships are important legal statuses that should be taken seriously. It is imperative that readers discuss their guardianship questions and concerns with attorneys who are familiar with their unique legal cases.