Generally speaking, a guardianship is a legal arrangement in which one individual becomes legally responsible for another. It can be seen in the child welfare context, in which a youth under the age of 18 is taken care of by someone other than his biological parents and who has legal authority to make decisions for that child. But, guardianship can also involve adults. This usually happens when an elderly individual becomes incapacitated.
A recent post here discussed the benefits of an adult guardianship. Depending on your loved one's particular set of circumstances, a guardianship may be worth considering. Such an arrangement can allow an incapacitated individual's health and finance decisions to be addressed until such time as he or she is able to make those decisions on his or her own, if possible. Yet, the creation of a guardianship must be handled delicately. As with most elder law issues, any slipups could result in an outcome that has an effect to the contrary of what was intended.
Life expectancy continues to rise in America. Yet, even though we are living longer, that sometimes means that we live more years in declining health. For many New Yorkers, this means they or their loved ones need to find a way to get by when they may be unable to care for themselves. When this is the case, it may be time to seek an adult guardianship.
Very few New Yorkers expect to be put in a position where they have to be responsible for the care of a loved one. Yet, quite often, an elderly loved one, or one who is simply incapacitated, becomes unable to care for him or herself. When this happens, it may be necessary for an individual to seek guardianship of their loved one. Doing so can instill an individual with certain legal rights that allow them to ensure that the guardian and his or her property is adequately protected.
The future often seems so far away that many individuals fail to adequately prepare for it until it is too late. While this procrastination certainly includes retirement and estate planning, it also includes care planning. Those who fail to adequately prepare for their future care may wind up facing financial hardship, a difficulty that can be unfairly thrust upon their loved ones. In other instances, a failure to take action could result in action or inaction that goes against one's wishes.
Aging can take a toll on us. Not just on our physical abilities but also on our mental capabilities. This can render day-to-day living extremely difficult, making dealing with healthcare and financial issues impossible. When an individual is unable to make these decisions for him or herself, it may be time to consider an adult guardianship.
If you have a loved one who has suddenly become too ill to make decisions for him- or herself, you may need to seek guardianship powers to make decisions for him or her. New York law allows for children and other close family members of incapacitated persons to apply for guardianship to ensure that their loved one is appropriately cared for.
Previously, this blog discussed the basic rights that are enacted when a guardianship is put into place. Such a legal arrangement can be beneficial in many circumstances, especially when an elderly individual is unable to make decisions on his or her own. These guardians can help handle medical, educational and financial matters.
There are many reasons why someone may find themselves in a situation in which they can no longer make decisions for themselves. Whether that's physical or mental challenges such as multiple sclerosis, Lou Gehrigs disease, Alzheimers, senility, dementia and the like, there are a variety of reasons why it may be necessary to designate a guardian for someone. These can be personal or financial, too, such as when a person becomes a victim of elder abuse or perhaps financial affairs necessitate the protections of guardianship.
Illnesses and injuries can rob otherwise healthy New Yorkers of their ability to care for themselves. Not only can an accident or other life-altering event prevent a person from being able to manage their physical well-being but such an occurrence can also preclude such a person from taking care of their financial and legal responsibilities.