If someone you love is no longer able to care for him or herself, establishing guardianship might be necessary. However, the process can be complex, which why understanding how guardianship works in Illinois is so essential. Caring.com offers a few helpful tips on how to establish guardianship on behalf of someone you love, which can greatly improve one’s quality of life.
The first step is to understand what adult guardianship entails. If illness has rendered a person incapable of making financial, medical, and other decisions on their own, a court can establish a legal guardian on behalf of that person. This will provide a legal basis for decision-making, including place of residence, types of medical care, and how bills or other expenses are paid.
It’s also important to know when guardianship makes sense for a loved one. If a person is lacking documents related to things like medical care during incapacitation (such as an advanced health care directives), establishing guardianship is crucial when it comes to making essential decisions regarding health and well-being. In terms of financial decision-making, a lack of a power of attorney means that important financial matters might be neglected due to lack of oversight.
In order for a court to agree that guardianship is necessary, a few different factors will be considered. Family members may be asked to provide information on the ability of the person at the center of proceedings, while the person may also be questioned directly to understand their level of comprehension. If it’s established that a person needs assistance, the scope of this help will also need to be determined. Depending on a person’s level of incapacitation, some decisions might be left up to the individual, while others might be passed onto the guardian. In other cases, guardianship might only be temporary, until the person makes a recovery from their illness or injury.