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LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
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What are the pros and cons of being ones guardian? And would

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What are the pros and cons of being one's guardian? And would the guardian be responsible for anything negligent or criminal the ward might possibly do?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Relist: Other.
I have been waiting too long for an answer.
Good afternoon,

I'm sorry to hear of the confusion. Had I seen your question earlier I would have answered it. Your question goes into a cue and is not directed to anyone in particular. But I can assist you.

As a Guardian, you would be expected to make the day to day decisions as regards XXXXX XXXXX aspects of the life of the ward. You would be obligated to act in the best interest of the ward. You would be determining where they lived, what medical care they receive, the education that they would receive as well as counseling. If they were to die, you would be tasked with making the end of life decisions for them.

As a general rule, you would not be legally responsible for their crimes or negligent behavior.

On the con side---you just can't walk away from your responsibilities if things get rough. Only the court can relieve you of those obligations. You have the obligation to make sure that they are safe and taken care of---much as you would for a child of yours. It is time consuming as well as potentially costly. If the ward does not have assets of their own, you would be limited to what you might receive from the state---so this could be an economic burden on you as well.

I hope that you found my answer informative, that you are accepting of my efforts and that you will rate my efforts based on the knowledge I have provided to you.

I wish you the best in 2012.

Thank you.

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Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for that. My son is 44. I have been doing all of the things in your first paragraph from day # XXXXX My son suffers from schizophrenia as well as TBI from an accident - he was walking and hit from behind by a tractor trailer in 2004. Had a closed head injury and was in and out of consciousness. He makes irrational decisions and spends his SSD check foolishly and I am paying all the bills. I don't mean to boast but I have literally saved his life several times as I am his nurse, advocate etc. No one would have noticed but he had septicemia and chronic infection of the bones. He required immediate surgery. That aside,
there was a lawsuit filed in 2004. My name as well as his was on every piece of mail that came from the atty (PI). We settled in 2004 and still did not get my son's money. The atty became our adversary. I went to an elderlaw atty who made recommendations and PI atty. refused them. And so, he took us to court several times and I was ADVISED, not ORDERED to get guardianship. Can a judge do this? The lawyer was allowed to take his cut but my son's money is still in the hands of this lawyer and sanctioned by the judge. How can we get this money?
Should I have my son just go and tell them that he wants his money as his rights are being violated or should I get guardianship and do it myself? This atty.became our adversary. I should tell you that I have had my son's POA since 1998. Can you please see me through this?
Good afternoon,

You have taken what was a simply question, which I fully answered, and now have come back with a set of facts so legally complicated that it could take many hours, if not days, just to unravel all the facts---much less provide any sort of remedy under the law.

If I were charging you by the hour, as I now do after 3 decades of experience as a Personal Injury Trial Lawyer---yes, I could do that. Am I willing to give up the better part of several days to see this through. No, I'm afraid that I can not justify that. Your situation is just really not appropriate for this venue. You need a local attorney acting on your behalf.

I can tell you that the court has the right to make any recommendations that it wants, if it is dealing in the best interests of an individual before it, your son included. Your son should have fired the attorney long ago and retained a new attorney to get the settlement finalized and your son paid.

I wish you well.
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