A guardianship and trust are the form of Last Will and Testament most commonly used by the parents of minor children (under 18). Unlike a simple Will, guardianship and trust allow you to state clearly where or to whom you want your assets to be distributed and also allows you to appoint an Executor. If you appoint more than one person, they must all sign in unison as their respective roles become apparent. Once the appointments are made, any existing trusts or powers of attorney that would otherwise be deemed valid in your will be terminated. The same applies to any intestate or revocable trusts already in existence.
Any minor children who do not have any parents have the right to appoint their own personal representative. However, in many cases this can be difficult as the appointed person has to be registered as the spouse of the decedent for the purposes of intestacy. Additionally, the appointed guardian may have limited powers that do not apply to other minor children. There are three types of guardianship orders that can be filed in Georgia; appointed, continuing, or surrogate. An appointed guardianship lasts until the death of either minor children or the estate is transferred to another relative or friend.
Continued guardianship is designed to provide financial stability to the decedent’s or minors estate for a specified period after the decedent’s death. A typical continuing guardianship will allow for regular trust administration by a neutral or appointed Trustee appointed by the court upon the order of a judge. Any changes or objections to the estate must be done through court proceedings.
A surrogate guardianship is when one person serves as the beneficiary of another person’s estate. California surrogacy must be finalized by a court through an appointed Trustee. The intended parent can choose someone to serve as the trustee or they can select a legal guardian from the list provided by the state. If you are considering a California surrogacy, you should contact your attorney for more information about the process and the options that are available to you and your loved one.
A last, but very important, type of guardianship is a conservatorship. Conservatorship means that the court has ordered another individual to assume the responsibility of protecting the interests of the decedent. A conservatorship is only effective if it is filed with the appropriate court and only after the court has found that there is probable cause to believe that the decedent has a mental disability and that the person who would be given the conservatorship has the physical ability to take care of him or her.
As you can see, there are many different types of guardianships and trusts, so it can be difficult to determine which option is best for you and your loved one. California probate attorneys are knowledgeable and experienced at handling this type of case, as are personal injury attorneys and real estate attorneys. In the end, it is important that you work with a Georgia’s finest probate attorney who understands how the system works and who will work in your best interest. Just because you are not a doctor does not mean that you do not have rights! Protect your interests today by contacting a probate attorney and learning more about guardianship and trust estates. For more information visit www.georgiaprobateattorneys.net.