An estate planning attorney can help us plan for our futures. But, we can also use estate planning to care for our loved ones now. In some cases, you may want to create a guardianship for a family member or friend who can no longer make sound decisions for themselves. Read on to learn more about guardianships in Michigan.

What is Guardianship?

Guardianship allows a person to take over some or all of the decisions and responsibilities of another person. This may happen in cases involving an elderly or disabled adult who is no longer capable of caring for him or herself.  In some cases, a person will have already named a guardian in his estate planning documents. Other times, no guardian will have been named and a loved one can file for guardianship.

What Are the Types of Guardianship?

There are several different types of guardianship that can be appointed depending on the individual and his or her situation. These include the following:

  • Guardian of the person: This individual makes life decisions for a person, including health care, education, and welfare.
  • Guardian of the property: This individual handles decisions about the person’s money, investments, and savings. They are obligated to file an annual report about the properties.
  • Guardian of the person and property: This individual is responsible for both life and property decisions.
  • Guardian ad litem: This individual is assigned by a judge to act for an individual during a court case in the event that they cannot defend their rights or protect their own interests.

In most cases, the court will attempt to rule in favor of the least invasive method.

 How to Obtain Guardianship

In a guardianship, one person has the legal right to make a binding decision for another person.  As previously mentioned, in some cases, a person has chosen a guardian while he or she was still of sound mind. But, a guardian was not chosen, you will have to apply for guardianship. In essence, you as the applicant are stating that your loved one does not have the cognitive or communicative capacity to make decisions for themselves and/or are unable to give informed consent for personal, medical, or financial affairs.

If you are interested in filing for guardianship, contact our firm today to speak with a dedicated estate planning attorney.

Contact our Firm

Sometimes, divorce, family, and estate matters are difficult to navigate. Fortunately, they do not have to be with the assistance of a compassionate, knowledgeable attorney who is willing to guide you every step of the way. If you need a seasoned firm to help you with any divorce, family or estate-related matter, please do not hesitate to contact Collis, Griffor & Hendra today to schedule a consultation.

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