Practice Areas

Guardianships

When a Guardianship is Needed

Ventura County Guardianship Lawyer ©Valentin MendozaLife is not always fair. Sometimes a minor child can lose one or both parents far too early in life. Other times, a child has income from a job or inheritance and needs financial assistance from a parent or other adult. Guardianships are used when a minor needs financial or living assistance.

Guardians might be named in the estate plan of a minor’s parents, or they can volunteer for the job. If a guardian isn’t named in any documents, the court may appoint one.

How Guardianships are Instituted

A guardianship is a court proceeding where a judge appoints a responsible guardian to handle the affairs of a minor. This can include managing finances, medical decisions, where they live, and who cares for them. It can even include where they go to school, date, or get married.

California guardianships fall into two categories. A “Guardian of the Estate” handles a minor’s financial needs. A “Guardian of the Person” manages healthcare, living, education and social needs. A guardian can serve in one or both roles for a minor.

Being someone’s guardian is a very serious job. Reports must be done on an annual basis. The court will check in with the minor throughout the guardianship. The guardian must keep thorough records.

Since a guardianship is for the life of a minor, it will automatically terminate on the minor’s eighteenth birthday. No dissolution of the guardianship is necessary upon their adulthood.

Guardianships can be very complex proceedings. They involve many different court forms, hearing dates, and deadlines. The guardian will also go through a background check and be interviewed by the court. If a minor in your life needs a guardianship, please contact us to assist you. We will be happy to help guide you through the process.