When a person is deemed unable to make his or her own decisions, a court will appoint a guardian to make decisions on the incapacitated individual’s behalf. Guardians can be appointed voluntarily or involuntarily, and they are not always permanent. Sometimes, a situation may arise that calls for the removal of a guardian. Since the guardian is appointed by the court, his or her removal must go through the court as well. For this reason, seeking the guidance of an experienced probate attorney in Miami is advisable before beginning the process.
Reasons to Remove a Guardian
There are many reasons one might need to remove a guardian that has been appointed to a loved one. For starters, the incapacitated individual, referred to as the ward, may have regained his or her ability to make sound decisions. In other instances, a friend or family member may have reason to believe the guardian is abusing his or her power, or simply not acting in the ward’s best interest. Removal of a guardian could also occur if the guardian is found to no longer be qualified for the position, as could be the case if he or she were convicted of a felony or were deemed incapacitated themselves. Each of the 21 reasons a guardian may be removed from the role are set forth in Florida Statute 744.474, and a probate attorney can assist loved ones in determining whether the ward in question’s situation qualifies.
The Removal Process
Once it has been determined that proceeding with the guardian removal process is in the ward’s best interest, the steps for stripping the title will depend on the situation at hand. For instance, in the event that the ward is believed to be in imminent danger, one can file a Petition for Emergency Court Monitor. This will begin an investigation into the guardian’s performance. Otherwise, loved ones can file a Petition to Remove Guardian through an experienced probate attorney. The attorney’s role is to ensure the proper procedures are followed and no errors that would nullify the petition are made. If the petition is successful and the filing party qualifies to serve as a guardian in Florida, he or she would assume the duties. However, if this is not the desired outcome, a Petition for Court Monitor can be filed on a non-emergency basis in lieu of the Petition to Remove Guardian to request that a more suitable guardian be appointed.
If you are in need of legal counsel regarding guardianship in Florida, it is important to enlist a probate attorney in Miami who is knowledgeable, experienced and compassionate. Our attorneys are here to serve you and guide you to a favorable resolution. Contact our office today to schedule your free consultation.