Family Law

Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath LLC

Illinois Guardianships for Children and Dependent Adults

Wheaton Estate Planning Attorneys for Guardianships

There are moments in life when the unexpected happens, and some problems may seem impossible to solve in certain situations. A child may lose his or her parents, either because of death or because the parents are incapable of caring for the child. A minor may become entitled to receive property, but a minor is not legally capable of handling his or her own property. An adult may lose the capacity to male personal or financial decisions. When this happens, a hearing is held in court during the Illinois probate process, and, if the court finds any of these to be the case, the court will appoint a legal representative of the disabled person, called a guardian.

The child or disabled adult is called the "ward." A guardian of the estate handles the ward's financial matters; a guardian of the person makes personal decisions on behalf of the ward. Sometimes both are needed; sometimes only one. The same person may be appointed both guardian of the person and guardian of the estate, or they may be different.

Being a guardian is often not an easy job. The guardian must act strictly for the best interests of the child or disabled adult, who is called the "ward." The court protects the ward, and the guardian can properly act only in accordance with legal authority and the court's directives; and the guardian must account to the court. The attorneys at the Wheaton law firm of Stock, Carlson, Oldfield and McGrath LLC have represented many guardians, and assisted them in fulfilling their legal duties.

Contested Guardianships

People love their independence, and our laws strive to give people as much independence as possible for as long as possible. The person who is alleged to be disabled is always entitled to notice and an opportunity to be heard; sometimes they do not agree with the allegation. Or, it may be clear that the person is disabled, but there is a disagreement about who should be appointed guardian. The attorneys at the Wheaton law firm of Stock, Carlson, Oldfield and McGrath LLC have represented many people involved in the guardianship process, protecting their rights in this difficult time.

Planning Ahead for Your Family's Needs

When families plan ahead, they are more capable of dealing with these kinds of life altering circumstances effectively.

If you are the parents of young children or adult children with disabilities, designating a legal guardian to look after them if something were to happen to you is one of the most important decisions you will make. Competent adults have the right to designate who they trust and want to handle their health and financial decisions (their "agent") should they become disabled by executing an appropriate power of attorney; not doing so does not prevent the disability, but it does mean that the decision will be made by a probate judge who knows nothing about you or your family. A special needs trust may be appropriate for the long-term financial care and support of a disable loved one. Even elderly parents in need of full-time care, may be appointed a guardian by a family member, especially if the elder has become mentally ill.

At the Wheaton law firm of Stock, Carlson, Oldfield and McGrath LLC, our estate planning attorneys help families prepare for the worse and deal with life's unexpected moments. We can help you through the decision making process of naming a legal guardian for your child or offer you our legal guidance for creating powers of attorney.

Our Attorneys Take Care of You

If you have questions about guardianships, designating your agents and making sure your loved ones are taken care of in the event you are no longer capable, then contact our guardianship attorneys in Wheaton, Illinois at the law firm of Stock, Carlson, Oldfield and McGrath LLC to schedule a consultation. We represent clients in DuPage, Cook, Kane, and Lake County and in cities throughout northern Illinois.

 
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