Many times when the court establishes guardianships, it is the family members of people who are no longer able to manage their affairs who initiate it. However, sometimes people recognize when they are no longer able to manage their financial affairs and voluntarily seek guardianship.
In these cases, a person may file for voluntary guardianship. What is voluntary guardianship it and what are the benefits?
What voluntary guardianship is
A voluntary guardianship is when a person files a petition with the court to have someone else appointed as a guardian. If the court approves the petition, the guardian has the legal authority to make financial decisions for the petitioner until that person dies or revokes guardianship.
Benefits of voluntary guardianship
The primary benefit of voluntary guardianship is that it protects your assets from anyone who might try to take advantage of you while you are unable to make your own financial decisions. It also makes it possible for you to choose your guardian, rather than leaving that decision to a family member once you become incapacitated.
Voluntary guardianship puts you in charge of deciding how much of your assets the guardian has authority over. The courts supervise voluntary guardianship, so your guardian must manage your assets to your benefit rather than for personal gain.
A voluntary guardianship only gives your guardian authority over your property, so it is not an all-in-one solution. You may also need to consider other options, such as a durable power of attorney. However, voluntary guardianship can be a valuable tool for protecting your assets.