I’ve been appointed guardian for my mother. What next?

120244150Legal Services: Probate, Guardianship, Estate Planning, Planning for Incapacity, Living Will, Trust, Health Care Directive, Durable Power of Attorney, Last Will and Testament

 Reporting Requirement for Guardians

The court order that legally declares a person a guardian for another (the ward), is named the Order      Appointing Guardian for  [name of the ward]. It is a written document signed by the assigned judge in the county where the ward, and usually guardian reside. Another document, also signed by the judge is called Letters of Guardianship. This is the document that can be presented to any third person or entity, who asks for proof of guardianship. These documents are also maintained in the court file. Reports to the court (judge) from the guardian, about the ward’s finances (an annual accounting) and their medical conditions, treatment and social environment are required to be submitted (filed) with each year. These are completed on standard forms which your attorney will provide to you and assist you with. The forms is Hillsborough County are available for printing and download on the website for Hillsborough County judges site at www.fljud13.org. You have been appointed guardian of the person or guardian of the property or both. If you have been appointed guardian of the person, you will be required to complete and file an Annual Plan. If you have been appointed guardian of the property, you will be required to complete and file an Annual Accounting. Of course, if you are appointed the guardian of the person and property, then both reports will be required. Once you complete the Annual Plan and Annual Accountings, your guardianship lawyer will file them with the court. The annual report for the guardian of the person is known as the Annual Plan. The Annual Plan is in a question and answer format, which asks about the ward’s medical providers, health, and social needs and how they are being addressed. The Annual Accounting is much like other accountings. The cash and non-cash assets of the ward are accounted for, by noting income “receipts” during the year, and the “disbursements” which is the what, where and amount of how the ward’s money has been spent. There is also an area for reporting capital losses such as a depreciation of a house, for example. The courts provide an educational class for the guardians, which is designed to teach the guardians how to complete these two reports. Normally, a judge will order the guardian to complete the 4 or 8 hour class. Not to worry, the class is fun and informative, and certainly makes the reporting requirements less daunting. 107855351     120244150