Recently, both ABC News and CNN reported that 87 year-old actress Carol Burnett has filed for guardianship of her 14 year-old grandson in the courts of Los Angeles County, California. Burnett’s daughter is the grandson’s parent, and Burnett alleges that her daughter has suffered from severe substance abuse addiction for many years. As a result of the addictions, Burnett alleges that her daughter is no longer able to provide a safe environment for her son, and Burnett has asked the Court to become the child’s guardian so that she can provide a healthy environment for him.
In seeking guardianship of her grandson, Burnett is asking the Court to allow her to step in and make all of the medical and financial decisions for her grandson, as if she was the child’s parent. The request can be a controversial request that is likely to only be granted in the most severe cases.
While most guardianships relate to incapacitated elderly adults, some guardianships relate to minors who do not have a parents to care for them. In this particular case, the guardianship has become necessarily not because of the death of the parents but because of the parents’ extreme inability to provide care for their son.
Burnett’s situation proves that nobody is free from the potential of needing competent legal counsel to handle a guardianship case. The attorneys at Ford + Bergner LLP handle a significant number of complex guardianships each year, and we would be happy to assist you if this becomes an issue for you.