Guardianships are court supervised proceedings for minors. These probate court proceedings can involve the care of the minor’s personal affairs, the minor’s financial assets, or both. This type of probate case is less common than typical probate cases and it is important that clients retain counsel well versed in the specificities of California guardianship law. MarvanLaw, A.P.C. has handled straightforward and a complex guardianships. MarvanLaw, A.P.C. has a passion for guardianship law because we remain focused on the best interests of the minor and want to assist the guardian maximize the short and long-term goals of the minor.

Guardianships can be either of the person, of the estate, or both. A guardianship is necessary for a variety of reasons but most often occur because a parent is not fit to act, a parent has passed away, or the minor is set to inherit property of a decedent. Each of these instances are different and require specifically tailored strategy and paperwork.

Establishing a guardianship requires an individual to petition the court to establish the guardianship. The petitioner nominates a person, persons, or entity to act as guardian of the person, guardian of the estate, or both. This nomination may be set forth in the deceased parent’s estate plan, may be made by the minor (if the minor is an appropriate age), or may be made by a family member or friend. Depending on the specific facts of the case, the court may appoint an attorney to represent the minor. The petitioner must provide notice to certain relatives of the minor within a certain degree of relation pursuant to the table of consanguinity.

Individuals who have standing before the court may consent, object, file their own competing petition for guardianship. The court determines whether the proposed guardianship is in the best interests of the minor. The court must, additionally, determine whether the proposed guardian is best suited to act as guardian.

If a guardian of the estate is necessary, the court needs to ensure that the assets of the estate are secure. To protect the assets, court may require a blocked account, a bond, or a combination of both. If the guardian receives or disburses assets over the time period of a guardianship the court requires that the guardian of the estate to file periodic accountings of their actions as the fiduciary for the minor. An accounting sets forth the assets of the guardianship estate at the beginning of the time period, the assets of the estate and the end of the time period, every receipt and distribution over the time period, any change in form of assets of the time period, and any other relevant information regarding the minor’s estate of the time period of account.

Guardianships last until the minor reaches the age of majority (18 years old) unless terminated earlier. The legal proceeding for a guardianship of the estate generally stays open for one additional year at which point the guardian may petition to discharge the bond and for the case to be

Guardianships, like probate cases in general, can be straightforward or complicated. The level of complexity depends on the number of minors involved, the family dynamic, the nature of the assets, and other case specific factors.

MarvanLaw, A.P.C. is passionate about guardianship law. We take our role in guardianship matters seriously as these types of cases help lay the foundation for success of the minor(s) as they enter into the world as an adult. We believe that sagacious, empathetic, and resolute counsel is necessary in guardianship matters. MarvanLaw, A.P.C. is always focused on the best interests of the minor and remains committed to helping its clients achieve these result no matter their role in the guardianship proceedings.

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