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Guardianships Archives

Healthcare proxies explained

Adulthood comes with decision-making. There comes a time in one's life when they are unable to make financial decisions or important medical ones for themselves. While many think this can only happen in old age, when an elderly person begins to slow down cognitively, this is not always the case-a sudden car accident can leave accident victims unable to make essential end-of-life decisions. In these instances, it is possible to create a power of attorney that delegates the power to make financial and medical decisions to someone else. In Pennsylvania, it is possible to combine a healthcare power of attorney with a living will in a healthcare proxy.

Guardians will be able to file annual reports online

Guardianships may be necessary when an elderly person is no longer able to care for themselves and has not planned ahead by the preparation of Powers of Attorney. Prior posts have discussed how the Orphans' Court may appoint a Guardian of the Person to make medical or placement decisions and a Guardian of the Estate to manage their finances. Whatever the reason, when someone agrees to take on the guardianship of a loved one, it brings on certain duties and responsibilities.

What can you do if a loved one might need a guardian?

A guardianship may be needed when Pennsylvania residents see a loved one struggling. In some cases, it is an elderly relative who simply can't do the things they used to do. In other cases, it may be a special needs child. There are many different ways that people could arrive in a situation where they cannot complete day-to-day tasks. In these scenarios, it may be necessary to file a guardianship petition to have a guardian appointed.

The elderly or those with special needs may need guardianship

Guardianships may be needed by the elderly or those with special needs. It can be difficult to watch the ones we love struggle to complete even the most basics tasks in life. However, when older relatives or relatives with special needs are facing difficulties, the law provides an avenue to help them - guardianships.

Alzheimer's disease may lead to a guardianship

Guardianships may be necessary for individuals suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Many people in Pennsylvania probably know someone who has suffered from Alzheimer's disease. It is a terrible disease that can, essentially, ruin a person's life. This disease, unlike many others, attacks the brain and is almost impossible to treat.

Making sure your guardianship goes smoothly

Guardianships are something that most people don't think about until a need arises. In Pennsylvania, relatives may become incapacitated and unable to care for themselves. It is a fact of life that, as our loved ones grow older, they may not be able to make appropriate decisions for themselves and may not have planned ahead for this possibility. For other families, a special needs child could be born, who will never have the capability of caring for himself or herself due to a physical or mental disability. When these types of situations occur, guardianships may be needed.

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.

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