Guardianship Litigation can certainly be a challenging, stressful, and emotional time for a family. For some families and under some certain circumstances, guardianship litigation may be the last hope. However, this process could be avoided if an estate is planned thoroughly and carefully.
Typically, a family talks about their loved one’s health and physical and mental abilities to help determine how a loved one will be taken care of. If a family wants to avoid this type of litigation, here are some things that a spouse or other relative can choose to do:
- The parent is moved into a nursing home
- The parent is moved into assisted living housing
- The elderly or ill parent lives with one of the children who are now adults
Does the parent have a diminished capacity? If not, then your loved one may feel more comfortable in having an attorney help prepare a power of attorney. If a power of attorney is assigned, guardianship litigation may not be needed because the guardian will be appointed. If your family truly wants to avoid litigation, then someone can set up a trust.
If your loved one does has a diminished capacity, then what can you do? If your loved one is married, then the husband or wife can petition a court to help determine the level of capacity. If there is no spouse, an adult child can file the petition.
The litigation process may not always consist of friendly conversations. However, whatever happens during this process, there should be a clear understanding of what is needed.
If you have a loved one who may need to be appointed a guardian because of their state of mind or health, contact us for a consultation.