What is Guardianship?
Guardianship, under family law, is the appointment of a guardian by the court subsequent to an application made under the Adults with Incapacity Act 2000. This is a court appointment that authorises a person to act and make decisions on behalf of an adult with incapacity. Anyone who is 16 or over is considered an adult. Someone who turns 16 and does not have the mental capacity to make decisions for themselves cannot necessarily be helped by their parents, unless the parents have put a Guardianship Order in place prior to the child's 16 birthday.
The term 'Guardian' can also be used to refer to a child’s legal representative, who usually holds a range of powers in relation to the child. This includes the right to residence with the child, as well as an ability to control the child’s upbringing and education
What is a Guardianship Order?
If an adult loses capacity and is no longer to be able to make decisions for themselves, and they do not have a Power of Attorney, they may require someone else to make decisions on their behalf. Obtaining a Guardianship Order from the court will enable the guardian to act on behalf of an adult with incapacity. This can include various decisions about medical treatment, finance and care.
This form of action is most suitably taken when frequent decisions need to be made in relation to the adult on an ongoing basis and will be granted if suitable and beneficial for the adult in question. In situations where family members do not apply for Guardianship, or if there isn’t a suitable person to be appointed as Guardian the local authority are required to apply to the Court to be appointed at Guardian.
Contact Kee Solicitors Today
If you want to appoint a guardian for your child you can set out your intentions in your Will.
Alternatively, if you are looking to apply for a Guardianship Order for an adult with incapacity, we are also able to guide you through this difficult process with a service tailored to your individual needs.