Tip of the Week

Guardianship Laws and the Specific Concerns for Special Needs Planning

Financial planners should consider four key questions regarding the law in the client’s home state when analyzing whether a guardianship will best serve a client’s needs:

(1) How does state law determine whether a guardianship is necessary?

(2) What are the legal decision-making standards for guardians in the state—importantly, to what degree, if any, must a guardian defer to the wishes of an individual subject to guardianship?

(3) How does state law determine whether a guardian is qualified to provide care?

(4) Has state law adopted the protections of the Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act (UAGPPJA)?

Special needs planners must be keenly aware of these issues to help clients make well-informed decisions in guardianship matters.

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