What Is A Guardianship?
A guardianship is the legal authority and duty to care for a person and/or the person’s property. Sometimes, a guardianship is for both and sometimes, the guardianship is for one or the other.
What Is A Limited Guardianship In New Jersey?
Sometimes, a person is perfectly capable of managing one part of his lives but not the other parts. In this case, the court will only award guardianship to the extent that the person needs help. If a person is disabled but can handle a small spending money budget, then the court doesn’t allow you to manage your spending money. The court may allow you to manage, for example, their health care, or paying the rent.
Is There A Difference Between A Conservator And A Guardian Under New Jersey Law?
In New Jersey, a conservator is only appointed if the conservatee agrees to be the conservator. One can’t simply walk in and be named a conservator. A conservatorship often happens when a person is mentally fit but physically challenged. Usually, he or she asks his attorney or the bank to be his conservator and manage his resources. It usually only happens with people with relative means. A guardianship is different because it can be involuntary.
Who Can Become A Guardian?
Almost anyone could become a guardian. Usually, the guardianship is filed by the person who wants to be the guardian, but that doesn’t mean that the court decides it’s in the person’s best interest for that individual to be the guardian. When you file, you have to notice anyone with an interest, e.g., siblings, parents, those to whom the alleged incompetent has given a power of attorney, the person who has custody of the alleged incompetent, court-appointed attorney, health care representative or is a trustee of a trust. Anyone currently having custody of the person could theoretically decide that they want to be the guardian. Being noticed is not the same as being named the guardian. A renunciation occurs when one of the named parties advises the court that he opts not to serve as guardian in favor of the person who is seeking the guardianship. They also have an opportunity to renounce that position. Guardianship can be contested but conservatorship cannot because the conservatee has to agree.
What Criteria Must Be Met For A Guardianship Of A Minor To Be Granted In New Jersey?
For minors, the State has stepped in to look for a guardian because of allegations of abuse and neglect by the parents making them currently unfit to care for their children. Usually, the guardianship appointment is for one year. If the parents continue to be deemed unfit to care for their children after having been offered a variety of services, the State will look for parents to adopt the children. It is different when you have a third agency involved and they will make a recommendation to the court.
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