Welcome back. Today, we are going to talk further about estate planning in Raleigh NC and how addressing a guardian for adult needs might be a good idea to add to the plan. If you missed our previous blog, be sure to visit back with it, soon.
Guardianship of Adults | Estate Planning in Raleigh NC
When someone is appointed a guardian, she must meet requirements that qualify her to serve. State guidelines vary but a few general rules apply to all. A guardian must be 18 years or older, cannot have a felony or misdemeanor on her record and must not be incapacitated herself. In cases where the wishes of the ward are heard, the ward can voice an opinion on the potential guardian. In many cases the ward is a family member, such as a spouse, sibling, aunt or uncle, and in some cases the parent.
State guidelines also vary on what qualifies a person as incapacitated. Someone should be deemed unable to make any decisions. Just because a person is bad with money does not mean he needs a guardian to make financial decisions. Also, just because a person has a developmental disability or a mental illness that does not always mean that he needs a guardian appointed to help take care of his affairs.
When someone is appointed guardian over a ward, the responsibilities generally include the following:
- Ensuring the ward has a safe place to live and monitoring the living arrangements
- Making decisions regarding finances on behalf of the ward, with the ward’s money
- Seeing that any other services are being provided to the ward such as counseling
- Making medical decisions for the ward
- Updating the courts on how the ward is doing in all areas of life
Guardians do not have to oversee all aspects of a ward’s life, and are not expected to know every detail of his or her affairs. A guardian is not a caretaker. He or she should step in when there are large decisions to be made that affect the ward’s safety, health, or finances.
Eldreth Law Firm | Estate Planning in Raleigh NC
Remember, estate planning in Raleigh is important. It’s a way to ensure your loved ones are cared for after you’ve passed. It’s also a way to distribute your belongings to specific loved ones as well. It’s important that one not pass without this document. Doing so can result in a court case that will leave your loved ones stuck in probate court. This could be not only time consuming but expensive as well.
Regardless of whether you're married, single, wealthy, childless or a parent, it's important for all adults to have an estate plan and the proper documents in place at the beginning of each year. If you're ready to begin planning your estate contact our attorney, today.