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Unified Family Court

GUARDIANSHIP

A guardianship is a legal proceeding in the courts in which a guardian is appointed by the court to exercise the legal rights of an incapacitated person. A guardian of the person makes decisions and takes action regarding the well being of the incapacitated person. The guardian of the property is responsible for managing the property/assets of the incapacitated person.

Download a list of registered professional guardians from the Florida Department of Elder Affairs, Statewide Public Guardianship Office. 

For filing fees, please view Unified Family Court Fees & Costs.

Guardianship Fraud Hotline

If you suspect a court-appointed guardian is misusing a ward’s finances, report it to the Guardianship Fraud Hotline.

Declaration of Pre-Need Guardianship - Florida Statute 744.3045

This document names the person that the filer wants to become his or her guardian in the event they become incapacitated or, in the event the filer dies, the person the filer wants to become guardian of his or her children. There is no filing fee for the document.

Conservatorship

A Petition for Conservatorship may be filed with the court, if a person is missing and presumed dead, in order that the court appoint a conservator to safeguard the property of the absent person.

Guardianship Incapacity - Florida Statute 744.3201

This is a procedure that provides for a guardian to be appointed for a person who has been determined by the court to be incapacitated (See Mental Health case types - Petition to Determine Incapacity).

Guardianship of a Minor - Florida Statute 744.342

The law requires that a guardian of the property be appointed when a minor receives or inherits assets of $15,000 or more. A guardian of the person of a minor may be appointed by the court if the natural parents are unavailable or unable to provide for the minor's well being.

VA Guardianship

This procedure is limited to veterans and other persons who are entitled to receive benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Voluntary Guardianship - Florida Statute 744.341

When voluntarily petitioned by a person who, though mentally competent, is incapable of managing their assets by reason of age or physical infirmity, the court may appoint a guardian of the property.

Emergency Temporary Guardianship - Florida Statute 744.3031

The court, prior to appointment of a guardian but after a petition for determination of incapacity has been filed, may appoint an emergency temporary guardian for the person or property or both of an alleged incapacitated person. The authority of an emergency temporary guardian expires 60 days after the appointment, but may be extended for an additional 30 days upon a showing that the emergency conditions still exist.