The short answer to the question “Do I need a lawyer for guardianship?” is no. It is not required to hire a lawyer to appoint a guardian for your minor child or for your adult child who is incapacitated (a ward). The state of Colorado Judicial Branch has a list of instructions and forms online that can be handled by individuals on their own.
That said, you need to know what you are getting into when you decide to take on the process of setting up legal guardianship on your own. Contained within the instructions are a list of over a dozen different forms to complete for this process. Not all forms are required and it will be your responsibility to complete and file the right forms in the right order with the correct court. There are also fees associated with filing petitions. Any hiccup in this process could delay the granting of guardianship and put the ward at risk.
After filing the paperwork with the courts, all other people who may have personal interest in the ward (as well as all wards over the age of 12) must be notified about the guardianship request. This is to ensure that all parties are in agreement that the person being recommended to act as the guardian is the best choice for the responsibilities.
Next, there will be a court hearing to ensure that the parents of the ward are aware this process is taking place, to determine if the guardianship is in the child’s or incapacitated adult’s best interests and to gain consent of the parents in the guardianship of a minor (if they are able to give it). The guardian will be responsible for providing support for the ward and making decisions for the ward in many different aspects of life such as:
- Living arrangements
- Social interactions
- And much more
There are many steps involved in setting up guardianship, but a ward will need support as quickly as possible. In order to speed up this process and ensure it’s done correctly, it may be advisable to get help from a qualified, trustworthy guardianship specialist.
The Denver guardianship attorneys at Brown & Crona, LLC have extensive experience helping families draft Colorado guardianship documents. Emphasis is always placed on the welfare of the ward, so they work diligently to make the process as quick and seamless as possible. To learn more, please contact us at (303) 339-3750 or send us a message online.