Protecting the Vulnerable
Appointing a guardian becomes necessary when another adult is not capable of caring for their own personal or financial needs and actually poses a potential threat to their own safety and survival. That said, guardianship is not permanent and can be revoked if and when the subject can prove that they no longer need assistance.
In Washington State there are very specific laws regarding the determination of incompetence but the goal is always to protect the vulnerable from themselves or from caregivers who may have bad intentions. A person may be assigned a guardian for reasons of prolonged or excessive drunkenness or drug use, mental deficiency, physical incapacity or temporary disability. A guardian’s job is to make sure that the victim is not being taken advantage of physically or financially. In Washington State the process to appoint a Guardian takes about 60 days.
Often times the need for a legally appointed guardian comes up in the care of elderly clients with no family members to help them. This is a very delicate process and involves a great degree of trust in choosing a guardian that will always have the best interest of the client in mind. There are professional guardians that can be appointed if a family member is not available. I have extensive experience in handling guardianships from the initial paperwork to start the Guardianship to the court hearing to appoint the Guardian. My staff and I have over 20 years of experience in handling guardianship matters.