Guardianship of an Adult
When an adult person is or becomes mentally and/or physically unable to manage their own affairs, most commonly daily life decisions, medical, and residential decisions, a guardian may be appointed for that adult. The appointment of a legal guardian may only take place when it is necessary to promote and protect the well-being of the impaired adult.
A power of attorney can be established before a person reaches an incapacitated state. However, once an adult loses the ability to make decisions while being fully cognizant of the document he or she is signing, a power of attorney is not a feasible option.
To become a legal guardian over an adult in Oregon, a petition must be filed with the Court establishing why an appointment of a guardian is necessary. The explanation must go beyond an assertion of the person’s mental diagnosis. After the petition is filed, the intending guardian must send notices to all interested parties, including the impaired adult. Other interested parties may consist of prior appointed fiduciaries, lawyers, relatives, and anyone else who may object to the appointment. These individuals have a timeframe to submit objections to the Court. Next, a Court Visitor is usually appointed to further investigate the impaired adult’s need for a legal guardianship. The Court Visitor files a report with the Court detailing his or her findings. If approved, the petitioner then files a Limited Judgment of Appointment and may be required to post a bond depending on the circumstances of the case.
There is quite a bit of legal knowledge that goes into establishing a legal guardianship. It is best to consult with an experienced guardianship attorney who can assist with the guardianship procedure. Please contact the Law Office of Aarti Gujral at (503) 608-0207 if you are trying to establish legal guardianship over someone who is or is becoming incapable of managing their personal affairs and/or daily decisions.