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Guardianships Archives

How to avoid most guardianship matters

Guardianships, if possible, should be avoided. How? By planning ahead and preparing an estate plan which includes Durable Financial Powers of Attorney as well as Healthcare Powers of Attorney and Living Wills. These documents permit you to name an agent to handle financial matters and an agent to make medical and end-of-life decisions.

Dementia can lead to guardianship of a loved one

Guardianships may be needed for loved ones with dementia. Why? It can be hard for Pennsylvania residents to watch their relatives grow old. We all know that, for many people, old age can come with certain symptoms which may sometimes be debilitating, like vision problems and memory loss issues. But, in some cases, these symptoms of "old age" could be symptoms of something much more serious, like dementia.

An overview of guardianship law in Pennsylvania

In the best-case scenario, every Pennsylvania resident would have estate plans and long-term care plans in place for when they are needed. Unfortunately, most of our readers know that the reality is that way too few people have these types of plans in place. In some cases, this means that when someone becomes incapacitated in some way - unable to take care of themselves, their financial affairs or their own health care - another person must step in to take care of those needs. This is what is referred to as "guardianship."

We help to select guardians and with other guardianship needs

Regarding guardianships, a previous post on this blog discussed the responsibilities that a person who serves as the guardian of a Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, resident has when caring for and making important medical and placement decisions on behalf of an incapacitated loved one.

Examining the responsibilities of a Guardian of the Person

In Pennsylvania, guardianships are sometimes sought over adults who can no longer handle their own medical or placement decisions. Those appointed as guardians have a lot of responsibility for their wards, which responsibilities are grouped into two basic categories. A Guardian of the Estate will usually have responsibility for a person's assets, while a Guardian of the Person will have responsibility for the care and custody of the ward.

Guardianship of a loved one

Guardianships may be needed when loved ones in Pittsburgh have special needs or become unable to take care of themselves or have illnesses, such as Alzheimer's disease. Family members who have an elderly loved one or a special needs relative must understand how the law works in these matters with help from an attorney experienced in Orphans' Court litigation.

Orphans' Court - Guardianship and authorizing expenditures in Pittsburgh

Guardianship may be necessary for a loved one who is no longer able to care for himself or herself, even though the decision to seek guardianship can be difficult. For Pittsburgh residents who are faced with this complex issue, it is important to understand how guardianship functions in the Orphans' Court and what must be done by the Guardian of the Estate. One of the most common issues that leads to confusion is how expenditures on behalf of the ward are handled and what is authorized.

Who can serve as a guardian in Pennsylvania?

Guardianships may sometimes be necessary for Pennsylvania residents growing older if they are no longer able to make appropriate financial decisions for themselves. For example, if a person has dementia or Alzheimer's disease, he or she may lack the ability to pay bills, deposit checks or make appropriate financial choices. When this happens, a guardianship action may be filed, and the court may appoint a guardian of that person's estate to handle finances.

Guardianship - To Avoid or Embrace?

We like to think of our parents and older relatives as immortal. We imagine that they will remain physically and mentally active for many years to come. Despite that faith, it often comes as a shock to Pittsburgh residents when a family member begins to show the signs of aging or they develop illnesses that affect their cognitive ability. These illnesses can slowly rob the family member of the ability to take care of themselves and to make financial and medical decisions that are truly in their own best interest.

Create documents to manage financial affairs while you still can

Though Americans are working and remaining active for longer than ever before, they are also falling prey to serious illnesses that can affect their ability think clearly. Illnesses such as dementia and Alzheimer's cause people's mental and physical health to decline over time and Pittsburgh residents diagnosed with the illness may want to consider making some changes to their financial affairs while they still can.

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