Illinois Guardianship Proceedings
Legal Proceedings in Guardianships of Disabled Adults
The guardianship process begins with the filing of a petition requesting that the Court appoint a guardian for a disabled individual. In order to prepare the petition, you will need to make a list of all of the disabled adult’s family members including all contact information. You will also need to obtain a report from a licensed physician—obtained no more than 90 days before the petition for guardianship is filed. A “guardian ad litem” may then be assigned by the court to meet with the disabled individual and talk to the person or persons seeking to become guardians.
In many cases, the guardian ad litem also contacts the disabled adult’s other family members. Following the meeting, the guardian ad litem will submit a report to the court that summarizes their investigation. Next, there is a hearing, typically within 30 days after the petition was filed. At the hearing, the guardian ad litem’s report and the physician’s report will be presented to the court. If the disabled adult is too ill to come to court, his or her presence will be excused.
Guardianship Proceedings Legal Services
Hays Firm LLC attorneys experienced in guardianship proceedings can provide the following legal services:
REVIEWING ESTATE PLANNING DOCUMENTS
All relevant documents will be reviewed by our attorneys to assess the disabled person’s wishes and the family’s goals.
DETERMINING WHETHER GUARDIANSHIP IS NECESSARY
Our attorneys will help to determine whether a guardianship proceeding is necessary in light of the estate planning documents.
DETERMINING THE REQUIRED TYPE OF GUARDIANSHIP
Our guardianship lawyers will ascertain what types of guardianship are necessary to protect the disabled person.
PREPARING THE PETITION FOR GUARDIANSHIP
We will prepare the required documents and initiate guardianship proceedings.
REPRESENTATION IN COURT
Our attorneys will represent the guardian at the hearing.
Our attorneys will facilitate communication with the court-appointed guardian ad litem.
SETTING UP TRUSTS
Our attorneys will set up trusts for a disabled adult family member with special needs.
ENSURING ADMINISTRATION OF TRUST
Our attorneys will ensure that a special needs trust is properly administered.
More Info About Guardianship Proceedings Services
How long does the guardianship process take?
In a simple guardianship, the guardian could be appointed in less than 30 days. The guardianship remains open until the ward passes away or regains the ability to manage their own affairs.
What is a guardian ad litem?
A guardian ad litem is an attorney appointed by the court who acts as the eyes and ears of the court. The guardian ad litem visits with the Respondent and provides a report to the court on whether he or she believes that guardianship is advisable. The guardian ad litem does not advocate any position, instead he or she simply gathers information reports back to the court.
After a guardian is appointed, how often does the guardian have to go to court?
After the Guardian is appointed they must return to court each year to provide an annual accounting of the Estate’s finances and a report regarding the health and condition of the ward.
What is an accounting in guardianship court?
An accounting in a guardianship is the annual report that the Guardian provides to the Court which shows all of the money that came in to the account and all of the disbursements that were made from the account. It is a very detailed document scrutinized by the court.
What is an annual report?
The annual report is a report to the Court on the physical condition and well-being of the ward.
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Guardianship Proceedings Articles
Andy and Antonia Hays talk to Chicago Lawyer Magazine about how their practice benefits from being partners in both business and life.
Since 2008, Andrew and Antonia Hays have run Hays Firm LLC, a Chicago-based practice specializing in estate, probate, trust & business law, including restaurant law and obtaining liquor licenses.
Guardianship proceedings are complicated and involved, but for many families they provide the peace of mind that comes from knowing that an elderly loved one is being protected and well cared for.