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A guardian is an individual, a corporation, or an association appointed by a probate court to be legally responsible for another person and/or their estate when that person is unable to manage his or her own affairs because of a mental disability or because they are a minor child.
While the guardian is the person responsible for the incapacitated person, the ward is the person for whom the guardian has been appointed. Probate courts appoint guardians to direct the legal, financial, and personal affairs of a person when that person is unable to manage their own affairs because of a mental disability. Frequently, family members or close friends will ask the court to protect someone who appears to be lacking the ability to take care of himself or herself and is, therefore “incompetent.”
If after reviewing the necessary evidence the court determines that the person is incompetent and guardianship is needed, the court will go ahead and appoint a guardian. Once the guardian has been appointed, he or she is accountable to the probate court for providing the appropriate care and management of the ward’s affairs and to act in the ward’s best interests at all times.
The control that a guardian has over a ward shall be limited to the authority granted by the court and by Ohio statutes. All guardians are required to obey the orders and judgments by the probate court that appointed them. The probate court may give broad decision-making powers to a guardian, or it may limit or deny any power granted by the court.
A guardian of the estate has the authority to make all financial decisions for the ward, whereas a guardian of the person has the authority to make day-to-day decisions about the ward’s personal care and these would include arrangements for food, clothing, living arrangements, medical care, recreation, and education.
The court can appoint guardianship of the person and the estate which gives the guardian the authority to make the personal care and financial decisions for the ward.
Other types of guardianships in Ohio include emergency guardianship, interim guardianship, co-guardianship, and limited guardianship. The rights taken away from the ward when a guardian is appointed will depend upon the type of guardianship established by the probate court.
If you are interested in obtaining more information about guardianships in Wood, Toledo, or Lucas counties, please contact a Rossford guardianship attorney from Heban, Murphree & Lewandowski, LLC today.