How To Address Common Fears Surrounding Tampa Guardianship Proceedings
Many older adults struggle with providing for themselves. If they suffer from physical or mental health conditions, it can make this even more difficult. Guardianship proceedings in Tampa may be the best way to protect them. However, making this decision and going through the process can create stress and anxiety for all the parties involved. Our Tampa guardianship attorney explains the benefits and addresses common fears.
When A Guardianship Is A Good Idea
Guardianship proceedings in Tampa involve granting one person decision-making authority over another. It is often used to protect older adults who suffer from physical or mental disabilities. Appointing a guardian is often a good idea and the best way to ensure they are protected.
The Florida Courts advise that guardianship only be used when other, less restrictive alternatives are no longer an option, such as powers of attorney or health care surrogates. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) advises that guardianship should be considered in the following situations:
- When a physical or mental disorder causes diminished capacity that is irreversible and permanent;
- When the condition impacts the person’s cognitive abilities, such as alertness, decision-making, judgment, and memory;
- When it impacts their ability to provide for basic needs, such as bathing, dressing, or feeding themselves;
- When it impacts their ability to manage finances and pay houses costs or other bills;
- Whether their condition leaves them vulnerable to abuse from others;
- When it prevents them from being a functional member of the community.
Addressing Fears Surrounding Guardianship Proceedings
Guardianship proceedings are held through the Hillsborough County Probate Court on either a voluntary or involuntary basis. When it is involuntary, it can cause serious problems between the parties and any other family members or friends involved.
The best way to address this situation is by agreeing on guardianship in advance and addressing some common fears:
- Loss of independence and control: Guardianship proceedings are designed to protect vulnerable older adults in the least restrictive way possible. They can still make decisions regarding their daily life and finances. A guardianship simply protects them from taking actions that work against them.
- The guardian will take advantage of the situation or not treat their ward well: A guardian should be someone knowledgeable, who the older adult trusts and has a relationship with. Guardians are fiduciaries, which means they must act in the person’s best interests. They must also report to the court regularly.
- Guardianship proceedings will get ugly: Guardianship proceedings can be conducted in a manner that protects the rights and dignity of everyone involved. Addressing some of these issues in advance and out of court makes hearings less difficult.
Request A Consultation With Our Tampa Guardianship Attorney
At the Strategic Counsel Law Group, L.C., we understand how difficult guardianship proceedings can be. Whether establishing a guardianship now or planning for it in advance, we provide the caring support and trusted legal guidance you need. To request a consultation, call or contact our Tampa guardianship attorney online today.