You are entitled to an attorney for a number of reasons, including the right to represent you in court. If you or your loved one is deemed legally incompetent, the court can appoint a guardian to make decisions for them. The guardian can also make changes to the guardianship if they deem that your care will be in their best interests. If this happens, it is critical that you retain an attorney to protect your interests.
Often, guardianship proceedings take place in the Superior Court of New Jersey, in either the Chancery Division or the Probate Part. The Plaintiff initiates the proceedings, seeking the appointment of a guardian to make decisions on the person’s behalf. Usually, a lawyer files the petition for the guardianship. However, this is not always the case. The guardian must be at least eighteen years old, and have no criminal record.
When guardianship proceedings proceed, the judge will decide whether to grant or deny the petition. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the judge may grant the guardianship right immediately, or set a trial to determine whether it should be granted. During the trial, witnesses testify and evidence is examined to make a decision. The judge will instruct the guardian on how to handle the case and how to conduct it.
The court may waive the fee for the guardianship case. To qualify for a fee waiver, you must provide the court with proof of a financial hardship. You must also submit an Application to Proceed Without Prepayment of Costs, Fees, and Security, which is usually waived for people who receive public benefits. Those who receive public benefits will most likely qualify for a fee waiver, but if you do not, you should explain why you need the fee waiver.
In a guardianship hearing, the court determines whether or not the proposed ward is incapacitated and needs help. The court also decides who will be appointed as the legal guardian. The proposed guardian must have a relationship with the person being guarded. A professional guardian is highly trained and has the necessary skills and knowledge to make decisions in the best interests of the person he or she is guarding.
The Court Appointed Counsel will interview the proposed Guardian, as well as inquire about the alleged incapacitated person’s assets and financial background. The attorney must prepare a report for the Court. The report must outline the findings of the attorney and make recommendations regarding the capacity, suitability, and areas of decision making retained by the alleged incapacitated person. A report should also address any unresolved issues that may be relevant to the proposed Guardian.
The court will require that the person serving the papers be at least eighteen years of age, a resident of the state, and not a member of the guardian’s family. The person serving the papers must also be a non-relative to the ward, as the person might have a financial stake in the case. If this is not the case, you can use an attorney to represent your best interests.
A guardian or conservator is appointed by the court when an adult becomes incapacitated and unable to make decisions. In this case, an adult who becomes incapacitated cannot communicate their wishes and can’t communicate them. The court will appoint a substitute decision-maker, also known as a “guardian.”
In some states, conservatorship is voluntary. In these cases, the person who needs help with their finances petitions the probate court to appoint a conservator. In order for a conservatorship to be approved, the conservatee must not be able to manage his or her own financial affairs. In addition to being legally incapable, the conservator must also be of sufficient mental capacity to make a decision.