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Legal Guardianship

Milwaukee Legal Guardianship Attorneys Help You Protect Your Vulnerable Loved Ones

Wisconsin lawyers advise on arrangements for minors and adults who need assistance

Parents generally take care of their children and adults generally take care of themselves. Sometimes however, parents are no longer there or are unable to take care of their sons and daughters. Likewise, adults who are unable to manage their personal needs might require assistance from someone trustworthy. When a child or adult you care about needs someone to assume legal responsibility for them, Hart Law Office in Milwaukee can help you pursue legal guardianship to protect their interests.

What types of guardianships are available in Wisconsin?

A guardian is a person appointed by a court to manage the financial matters and personal care for someone else. The person being cared for is referred to as a ward. This legal relationship is established when the ward is unable to meet their needs on their own due to age or some other reason. Wisconsin recognizes several different types of guardianships, including:

  • Temporary guardianship — Sometimes, it is necessary to appoint a guardian before there is time for a full guardianship proceeding. The temporary guardianship expires in 60 days, but can be renewed for a second 60-day period.
  • Permanent guardianship — After the court has had time to make a full inquiry into the needs of the proposed ward, a “permanent” guardian can be appointed. This person can serve until the circumstances requiring a guardianship no longer exist.
  • Guardianship of the estate — Different guardians could be appointed for different purposes. A guardian of the estate handles the ward’s assets and income so that their financial needs are met.
  • Guardianship of the person — When a guardianship of the person is established, the guardian makes medical and other care-related decisions on the ward’s behalf.
  • Guardianship of incompetent person — Once a doctor has evaluated an adult as incompetent, a guardian can be named to avoid dangerous personal and financial decisions.
  • Guardianship of minor — Children who are orphaned or whose parents lack proper fitness may be put under a guardian’s care until the youth reaches 18. The guardian would have legal custody of the minor.
  • Guardianship ad litemThe court may appoint a guardian ad litem to protect the interests of a minor, ward or potential ward during litigation.

We employ our knowledge and experience in family law to help you determine whether a guardianship is necessary for a minor or vulnerable adult and, if so, which type is needed.

How are guardians appointed?

Any Wisconsin resident may petition their Circuit Court for a guardianship to be established concerning a particular individual. The court will appoint a guardian ad litem for the prospective ward during the proceedings. From there, a hearing is held on the petition, at which point the petitioner must prove by clear and convincing evidence that the proposed ward qualifies for a guardianship. If the court finds that the burden is met, it will issue an order appointing one or more guardians. The petitioner may nominate a proposed guardian (including themselves), but the court is not obligated to appoint that person. If you wish to petition or contest the appointment of a guardian for a minor or incompetent person, our firm has the skill and experience to advocate for you effectively in the proceeding.

Contact an experienced Wisconsin legal guardianship lawyer for a free initial consultation

Hart Law Office helps Wisconsin clients obtain and oppose legal guardianships. Please call 414-271-1775 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation at our office in Milwaukee’s historic Third Ward. To better serve you, we offer weekend and evening appointments.

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