Pennsylvania Guardianship Laws

Having to seek legal guardianship can be an unfortunately necessary experience, but before you go to court, you will want to be well informed about what it takes to become a legal guardian, and when you might have to do so. 

Continue reading to learn more about when you might need to seek guardianship of an adult or a minor child and how you can ensure that your guardianship petition is as strong as possible. 

Guardianship of an Adult or Minor

There are countless reasons why you might be interested in seeking guardianship of a loved one in your life. The paths and reasons for obtaining guardianship will vary, depending on whether the person you want guardianship rights over is an adult or a minor.

If you are interested in obtaining guardianship over an adult, you will need to be able to prove to the judge that the person in question is legally incapacitated. Essentially, this means that they are not of sound mind and/or are incapable of caring for themselves or making critical decisions about their life. 

The burden of proof is high when seeking guardianship of a person over the age of 18, and for this reason, it is much more common for the person seeking guardianship rights to instead be appointed as a power of attorney.

Obtaining guardianship of a child can be done temporarily or on a standby basis, with or without the consent of the child’s parents. 

However, unless the judge has reason to believe the parents of the child are unable to provide the care the child needs, or that they are an inherent risk to the child, it is unlikely that guardianship rights will be granted without the consent of the parents. The rights of the father and mother must be kept in consideration.

How to Obtain Guardianship Rights

Whether you are seeking guardianship of a minor or an adult, you will need to petition the courts and attend a hearing in order to do so. Be prepared to prove to the judge that you have the individual’s best interests at heart and that you are prepared to care for them should you be awarded guardianship. 

Supporting medical documentation, any criminal or arrest records, and any other evidence that can show that you should be awarded guardianship can only help you in your hearing.

Contact a Pennsylvania Family Lawyer

Whether you are seeking guardianship of an adult or a minor child, you may need legal representation to achieve this goal. You can reach out to a regarded Pennsylvania family lawyer at Lisa Marie Vari & Associates, P.C. for assistance with your case. 

You can submit the quick contact form we have included at the bottom of this page or give our office a call at 1-844-VARI-LAW (827-4529) when you are ready to schedule your initial consultation.