Guardianship in Florida
Helping Floridians care for incapacitated loved ones
When a person is incapacitated due to age, illness, or injury, it causes a great deal of hardship and uncertainty for loved ones. But a comprehensive estate plan, including a durable power of attorney, healthcare surrogate and living will/advance directive, can help reduce this stress. When drafted by an experienced Burke Blue attorney, such a plan can eliminate uncertainty for family members by making their loved one’s intentions and desires clear should that person become unable to handle his or her own affairs.
Unfortunately, a person can only execute a will, durable power of attorney, healthcare surrogate or living will/advance directive while he or she is still competent. When a person becomes incapacitated and does not have a durable power of attorney in place, a guardianship may become necessary. Such guardianships should be a last resort, but when a loved one is incapacitated prior to signing a durable power of attorney, the skilled guardianship attorneys of Burke Blue can assist family members secure the legal authority to manage the affairs of their loved one.
The guardianship process in Florida
Most people think of minor children when they think of guardianships. In Florida, the term guardianship also applies to a legal arrangement that allows a competent adult to assume legal authority to manage the affairs of another adult who became incapacitated. While executing a durable power of attorney is a fairly simple process, establishing a guardianship requires the proposed guardian to petition a Florida court and provide proof that the proposed ward is no longer able to manage his or her affairs.
A guardianship is far from an ideal situation but may be the only option under some circumstances. For those with a loved one who, due to age, illness, or injury, can no longer competently handle his or her affairs, a guardianship attorney at Burke Blue may be able to help protect that loved one’s property and person from mismanagement and neglect by establishing a Florida guardianship.
Preparing for the unexpected with a comprehensive estate plan and durable power of attorney is always the best policy. But when unexpected circumstances intervene before a person can do so, a highly qualified Burke Blue attorney at one of our Panama City, Panama City Beach or Sandestin offices, can help you navigate through the aftermath.
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The hiring of a lawyer is an important decision that should not be based solely on advertisements. Before you decide, ask us to send you free written information about our qualifications and experience or contact us online or by phone at 850-769-1414 for Panama City; 850-236-4444 for Panama City Beach; or 850-267-9498 for Sandestin.