It can be one of the most difficult experiences of your life; realizing that a loved one has reached a point of being unable to handle his or her personal responsibilities. And it is possible that it is in their best interests for you to intervene and take control of the situation by becoming their guardian.
But there are several steps that you must take in order to assume the reigns of your loved one's affairs, which include:
- Having your loved one undergo a psychological evaluation.
- Filing for guardianship with your local probate court.
- Submitting the psychological evaluation to the court.
- Attend a hearing at which a judge will decide whether to grant you guardianship responsibilities for your loved one and his or her affairs.
Understandably, this decision is fraught with concern. You may even feel guilty about having to usurp your loved one's independence. But you need to consider what will happen if you don't step in and provide help. If he or she is truly incapable, then taking on the role of guardian may be the only humane thing you can do. And given all of the complications involved in gaining guardianship, you are likely best served by seeking the assistance of an experienced eldercare planning attorney.
An attorney can explain in detail all pertinent matters of becoming or seeking a guardian for your loved one. The attorney can guide you through each step of the process and inform you of what to expect as you move forward. Working with an attorney can help you prepare for the responsibilities you will be taking on as a guardian so that you can effectively act in service to your loved one in his or her time of great need.