While many people in Naperville understand that being named a guardian for another person carries a plethora of responsibilities, they are not always clear on what those responsibilities entail. Confusion is natural, because the duties of a guardian in Naperville vary depending on the needs of the individual subject to guardianship.
A guardian may be held liable for making decisions that conflict with the best interests of an individual, so many guardians find it helpful to consult a knowledgeable attorney for advice and counsel. A lawyer who understands guardianship situations could help understand what duties are required and how to fulfill those duties.
The duties of a guardian in Naperville, as well as the powers of that guardian, are determined in large part by the type of guardianship. Various types include:
The guardian of a minor generally stands in the shoes of a parent, making the decisions a parent would make. The guardian of a minor is expected to provide the type of care a competent parent would provide. A personal guardian of an adult provides the physical and mental well-being of an adult who is unable to make and communicate responsible personal care decisions while an estate guardian manages the finances of an adult who has been found to be incapable of handling financial matters.
A temporary guardian may be appointed to protect an individual’s welfare while a long-term guardianship petition is pending. Limited guardians are appointed when an individual is able to make some, but not all, decisions regarding their finances or personal lives. Powers of a limited guardian are listed in the court order granting guardianship. Finally, a standby guardian, also known as a successor or testamentary guardian, is someone designated to step in and assume the role if the original guardian resigns, passes away, or becomes unable to fulfill the duties of a guardian.
When the court appoints a guardian, in many cases the court order establishing guardianship specifies duties to be performed. This is particularly true with limited guardianships. To protect the individual’s rights, a limited guardian may only exercise powers specifically enumerated in the court order.
Duties of a guardian in Naperville may include making investment decisions, applying for appropriate public aid, securing necessary professional services, and many other matters. If duties and powers set forth in a court order are unclear, it may be helpful to consult an experienced attorney for assistance.
State law imposes many duties on guardians. For instance, personal guardians are frequently required to file reports addressing issues such as living arrangements, summary of medical, vocational, and educational services provided, information about health and mental state, and other issues.
Estate guardians have fiduciary duties established by state statutes and regulations. Among other things, they are required to exercise appropriate judgement to manage assets frugally. Overall, the duties of a guardian in Naperville include taking actions that are in the best interests of the individual for whom they are providing care.
A guardian must become familiar with the needs of the person whom they serve, because those needs determine the duties owed. In many cases, however, it is difficult to balance competing needs, and it becomes tricky to determine the appropriate duty under the law.
A guardianship attorney could provide guidance to avoid potential problems in fulfilling the duties of a guardian in Naperville. If a guardian’s actions are considered careless or lack the prudence expected by the law, that guardian could be held liable for any resulting losses or harm.