Guardianship of a Minor Child

A Guardianship of a Minor Child is necessary when there is no legal custodian available to act for the minor child. Generally, if a child’s parent is able and is willing to care for the child, a Guardian will not be appointed. The Court will consider the best interest of the child in determining whether to appoint a Guardian for a child and the person who should be appointed as the child’s Guardian. In certain circumstances the Court will enter an Order of Non-Party Custody of the child as opposed to a Guardianship Order. The Court will not determine whether a child will be better off with a proposed Guardian than with the child’s parent for reason that so long as the child’s parent is not unfit, the parent is presumed to be a proper Guardian. 

Often such a Guardianship is referred to as a non-party Guardian, non-party custody, or as a third person Guardian such as Aunts, Uncles, Grandparents, and other qualified persons. 

A Guardian may be appointed where the child’s parents are not able to provide for the proper care and supervision of the child. In certain cases, a non-party custodian will be appointed where the child’s parents are not able to provide for the proper care and supervision of the child.

Guardianship over a minor, whether over a child or the child’s Estate, is governed by Indiana Statute and Indiana case law. Non-party custody of a minor child is governed by Indiana Statute and case law. Normally, if a child receives more than $10,000.00 in property, a Guardian may be required to be appointed for the child or the Court will need to approve a protective arrangement.

For additional information on Guardianships over a minor child, please contact Attorney Frank Brinkman. 

Guardianship Over an Adult

An Adult Guardianship is provided by Indiana Statute. A Guardian can be appointed for the person of an incapacitated adult and for the estate of an incapacitated adult under certain circumstances as provided by statute(s).  

An incapacitated adult generally is an individual who is unable to provide for the person’s affairs, is unable to manage his or her property, is unable to provide for self-care because of insanity, mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness, infirmity, has a developmental disability, and/or has other incapacity as defined by Indiana law. 

If the Court finds an individual is an incapacitated adult and the appointment of a Guardian is necessary to provide for the care and support of that person, the Court may appoint a Guardian of the person. 

The Court can limit the Guardianship if the Court finds the incapacitated person would be best served by limitations. The Court will not try to grant a Guardian any more power over an incapacitated person than is necessary. 

Guardianship over an adult, whether the person or the Estate, is governed by Indiana Statute and by Indiana case law. 

For additional information on Guardianship over an adult, please contact Attorney Frank Brinkman.

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