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RobertJDFL, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 13514
Experience:  Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
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My brother filed wife, as he did not

Customer Question

My brother filed for guardianship for his wife, as he did not have a POA in place, and thought he was going to need it She has early onset Alzheimer's and he filed the paperwork to deem her incompetent. She a was recently placed in a memory care unit and approved for Medicaid. He is in the process of transferring the house and her car out of her name using the guardianship. Her only income is a modest social security of about $10,000 per year. The guardianship has proved to be demeaning, and quite awful, with the rules and regulations of the probate court, dictating his every move for his wife. It was truly a mistake that he realizes now.
He should have been told of other less restrictive alternatives, and was not advised properly. Can we ask for the guardianship to be revoked,/removed after the transfers are made. He is her husband, and takes wonderful care of her. Could he just become her re-payee for social security purposes and move on from there. Wishing he had never done the guardianship, as it has caused nothing but headache and hassle with the probate court being the superior guarding. Please advise. We live in Lorain, County Ohio.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  RobertJDFL replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for using Just Answer. I'm sorry to hear about your brother's wife. My father suffered from Alzheimer's for many years -it is heartbreaking and difficult for everyone involved.In answer to your question, is it possible to terminate the guardianship? Yes. Your brother would have to file a Motion to Terminate Guardianship with the court, and then the court would have to determine if it is in his wife's best interest that she have a guardian still, or not. Alternatively, he could ask the court that the guardianship be changed to a limited guardianship. Limited guardianship allows a probate court to appoint someone as guardian over only the portion of a person's life where he or she is both incompetent and has a need. Thus, there can be a limited guardian for example - medical purposes only (to provide consent for medical procedures), or for placement purposes only (admission to a group home). A ward for whom a limited guardian has been appointed retains all rights in all areas not covered by the court's order.As for how much of a challenge this would be - I defer to his lawyers, who are more familiar with the process in Ohio. But I would think it is worth him getting a second opinion from an outside elder care/estate planning attorney to see what they think. I would agree if she is still early stages and still is somewhat competent, there may have been less restrictive methods available to use such as her appointing him as her Power of Attorney and/or Healthcare Surrogate, for example, to make decision about her medical care on her behalf when she is no longer able. But, she would have to understand what she was signing, as you know, for such documents to be valid.Given that her disease is progressive, your brother's lawyers may be of the mindset that it's not worth changing because eventually, his wife will get to the point where a guardianship, in the absence of other estate planning documents, is absolutely warranted for her continued care, and therefore it is not worth the time or expense to undo it now, only to have to go back and get it again later on.If you need clarification or additional information, please reply and I'm happy to assist further. Otherwise, kindly remember to leave a positive rating by clicking on the stars/happy faces before signing out, so I am credited for my time and assistance today. Thank you!

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