When your parent begins showing more signs of aging and you start questioning that parent’s ability to care for himself or herself, you may start exploring your options. Depending on the severity of your mother or father’s condition, you may wish to establish a guardianship to help protect your parent and his or her assets.
Per the Florida Bar, the court may decide to appoint a guardian over your parent if the court finds that your parent lacks the capacity to care to make sound decisions.
Who may serve as a Florida guardian
Some people prefer to have close relatives serve as guardians over their aging parents, while others prefer to have someone without such a close personal bond take on the role. Most of the time, any adult resident of Florida may serve as a guardian for another Florida resident. In some instances, relatives who live outside of the state may also be able to assume the guardian role. However, guardians may not have felony convictions or any other circumstances that might prevent them from fulfilling their duties as a guardian.
What a Florida guardian often does
A Florida guardian may have authority over a ward, or a person under a guardianship, in the physical sense, the financial sense or both. A guardian who assumes responsibility for the property of the ward must inventory the ward’s assets, use them for that party’s benefit and make educated investments, if applicable. A guardian of a person takes on more personal duties, such as providing personal care or hygiene services for the ward or finding a professional or facility to do the same.
In some cases, Florida courts may determine a ward is only partially incapacitated and create a guardianship that gives the guardian partial rights.