It's important for the person taking care of your child to have the legal authority to consent to medical treatment, make school decisions, and receive the child's government benefits. It's also important for that person to have the legal obligation to care for the child.
Short-Term Guardianship Makes Sense For Older Teenagers
If your family agrees that someone other than the parents or court-appointed guardian should take care of your older teenager, a short-term guardianship might be perfect. When kids reach age 18 they are emancipated which means they are legally responsible for making their own decisions including financial, school, and medical decisions as well as where to live. It generally doesn't make sense to engage in a court process that can take months if your child will be emancipated in just a year or two.
Short-Term Guardianship Makes Sense For Temporary Arrangements
What if you need a grandparent, family friend, or other adult to watch your child over summer vacation or for a few months while you get your life together? A court proceeding to appoint them as the child's permanent guardian isn't necessary in these situations if the family agrees that this is the right thing to do. If a temporary arrangement becomes more permanent, when the short term guardianship expires the parents or permanent guardian can appoint the short-term guardian for another period of up to one year. There is no limit to the number of times a short-term guardian can be re-appointed by the parents or permanent guardian.
Short-Term Guardians Don't Control The Child's Money
If the child has money or property besides government benefits that the guardian will need to control, it is necessary to go to court for a guardianship of the estate. Otherwise, the parents or permanent guardian will continue to have the legal authority to control the child's bank account or other property.
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