Appointment of a Guardian Ad Litem After the petition for guardianship is filed with a notice of hearing scheduling the matter for an open-court hearing (a minimum of 14-days from the day the petition is filed), the court will appoint a Guardian … A guardian might be necessary when the child is unable to make decisions in his or her own best interest or provide for his or her own welfare. Head in the sand, hands over my ears-la-la-la-la-I-Can’t-Hear-You. Some things to consider before making a decision on which type of guardianship you should seek are: If your child will not be capable of responsibly doing any of these things, then you should apply for full guardianship. If your disabled adult child is unable to care for and make financial and medical decisions for himself you will need to file a petition for guardianship with your county probate court. No adult should be able to just claim guardianship over another without a process. Will the disabled child be able to manage their own medical needs? Talk with an attorney who specializes in this. Hell no! Parents of disable children often assume that their ability to make decisions for their disabled child will continue after the child turns 18. The petition contains all the basic facts including the petitioner’s relationship to the person to be under guardianship and a brief description of the disability and how it affects the person’s ability to make decisions. The laws in each state are different, so contact an attorney in your area. How to Obtain Legal Guardianship of a Disabled Adult. Self-determination is always the goal! The petition should also include the reasons why the court should appoint a guardian. A parent attempting to obtain court-appointed guardianship of an adult child must file a guardianship petition with the court. Some developmentally disabled folks do have difficulty distinguishing between right and wrong, and you want to protect your son/daughter as best you can. The school may tell the substitute parents that they have to get a “guardianship” over the children… What I didn’t know–the court actually appoints an attorney for the adult child who acts on their behalf. Nothing has a parent facing their own mortality more than having a child with disabilities. He is currently a Hearing Officer with the New Hampshire Department of Education and was previously in private practice with a focus in administrative law, constitutional law, education law, and health law. I can’t do that. Often, grandparents, aunts, uncles and others help out. Steps to take to obtain guardianship. She had a very well known, well publicized mental health crisis a few years ago. A situation like that could have been prevented if the person had a competent, caring, responsible guardian. I try to avoid it at all costs. 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