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Guardianship of a Minor in Florida
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When a minor child requires a guardian, the court will appoint an adult to act as guardian. The guardianship is supervised by the court and terminates when the child is 18 or earlier if terminated by the court. If you are in a situation that requires a guardian, contact Finley Williams Law, PA. Our St. Petersburg guardianship lawyer understands the complexities of the law and can guide you through the process.
When Florida Law Requires a Guardian
Under Florida law, any adult interested in a child’s welfare may petition the court for guardianship. Once appointed, the guardian has the legal rights required to care for that child and his or her property. In some cases, the parents may have named a guardian for their child in a will. However, the court will still need to determine that the person chosen by the parents is qualified to act in this capacity.
The law requires a guardian for a minor child when:
- The parents of the child die
- The child’s parents become incapacitated and unable to provide care
- The child receives money or property exceeding $15,000
There are many people that can be named a guardian, such as a sibling, relative, or even a parent when guardianship is needed for money and property. A non-relative may be appointed, as long as the person is a Florida resident. In addition, a professional or corporate guardian, such as a bank may be appointed. If a prospective guardian has a felony record or any record with a court indicating abuse, neglect, or abandonment of a child, that person would not be considered qualified to be appointed guardian.
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The Guardian’s Reporting Requirements
When the court appoints an individual as guardian for a minor child, the guardianship is supervised by the court. The guardian will be required to file an initial report within 60 days of being appointed. This must include an inventory of assets and annual plan for the child’s education, medical care, and daily care needs. This must be updated every year of guardianship. If you are interested in becoming the guardian of a minor child, our St. Petersburg guardianship attorney can answer your questions and assist you in the application process.
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