California Guardianship is offered to a person who has received permission from the court to make certain decisions and take care of a minor child or an adult who cannot take care of themselves and/or their property. The California guardianship can be granted to a person who is related or unrelated, but most of the time, a person who is related has more eligibility.
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California guardianship is a court process in which someone other than a parent is given custody of a child or when a parent or other person is given authority over a child’s property. The child, called the minor or ward, must be under the age of 18. A legal guardian is an adult the court chooses to be responsible for, and to care for a child, to manage the child’s property, or both.
A California guardianship of the estate allows the guardian to make financial decisions for a child, and is often filed when a minor is to receive a large monetary gift or inheritance.
Both parents and non-parents can become California guardians of the person and/or the estate for children.
Guardian of a Juvenile Dependent
A California Juvenile Dependency Court may declare that the parents of a minor child pose a danger and that a guardian needs to be appointed. A California guardianship can occur in six, twelve, or eighteen months after a minor child has been removed from the parents’ home.
During the interim period, a California child welfare agency will prepare a permanent plan and the California Juvenile Court will prepare an individual permanent report for the minor child. If the California Juvenile Court determines the child cannot return safely to the parents, an adoption, guardianship, or long-term foster care plan will be established.
The parents, minor child’s other relatives, foster parent, and other interested party who may qualify for California guardianships may attend the hearings to argue why they believe they should be granted guardianship of the minor child. The minor child may even testify during the hearing to state which parent they believe is the best for California guardianship.
A California guardianship require an in-home inspection of the guardian’s home which is done by the child welfare agency. Additionally, the guardian will likely have to meet with the judge who made the decision, and still qualify for guardianship after other interested parties and the parents have given their opinions. However, once the guardianship hearing is underway, a parent or interested parties my not contest the issue any farther.
Removal of California Guardianships
A California guardianship may be removed at any time if a California Court determine it is in the best interest of the child. Also, any child who is 14 years or older may ask the court to change their guardian. The California court will then investigate what duties the guardian has performed and what the best interests of the child are to arrive at a decision. All California guardianship ends when the minor turns 18, is adopted, gets married, or becomes legally emancipated otherwise.
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