A guardian is one who has the care of the person or property of another. Persons who may be eligible for guardianship are developmentally disabled, incompetent, a minor, a spendthrift, or have infirmities of aging. A guardian is appointed by the Court to take care of the “person” and/or the “estate” (i.e. property) of a ward.
The guardian of the person makes decisions relating to the physical placement of the ward, the medical treatment and control over the daily life of the ward. The guardian of the person is required to file an Annual Report on the Condition of the Ward by April 15 of each year.
The guardian of the estate takes possession of the ward’s property, provides an inventory to the Court of that property, and provides an Annual Account to the Court of how the ward’s assets have been maintained. The guardian of the estate must protect and preserve the property of the ward while taking into account the best interests and needs of the ward.
Sometimes a ward must be “protectively placed”. A protective placement is a placement of a ward for the primary purpose of providing care and custody.