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Sometimes elders lose their ability to manage their own affairs properly or to make responsible decisions regarding their health.  In these situations, a guardian may need to be appointed to handle their affairs. This legal process takes away the rights of the person who is determined by the Court to be incompetent.

When we assist clients with planning, we draft powers of attorney for property and health care, to reduce the need for a guardian in the future. There can be situations, however, where a guardianship cannot be avoided, due to family circumstances or the elder's lack of cooperation in making decisions in his or her best interests.

There are several different types of guardianships in Ohio. The type of appointment is dependent upon the needs of the individual who requires a guardian (the ward):

  • Guardianship of the Estate: Guardian is responsible for all property and financial matters of the ward.
  • Guardianship of the Person: Guardian is responsible for daily personal decisions including medical care and living arrangements of the ward.
  • Guardianship of the Person and Estate: Guardian is responsible for all decisions of the ward.
  • Emergency Guardianship: Guardian is appointed immediately when the ward is in imminent risk of death for a limited period of 72 hours.

Guardianship may not be the right path for everyone, particularly if the incompetent person already has a power of attorney. We consider each individual's circumstances so we can provide the right counsel for the option that best suits you or your loved one.

Please contact us so we can help you understand your options, and which one is applicable for you or your loved one.