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Guardianship Services in Duplin County

When an adult is deemed incompetent, another individual will need to serve as his or her guardian. Guardianship refers to the legal relationship between the authorized guardian and the incompetent adult, the ward. An adult who is unable to manage his or her own affairs without assistance will need a guardian to complete various procedures.

Anyone who has relations with the incompetent individual can file a petition to have the individual declared incompetent and to be appointed guardian over the individuals' legal and financial affairs. If you are preparing to become a guardian, speak with our Duplin County guardianship attorney regarding the guardianship proceeding.

How does a guardianship proceeding work?

If you are thinking of filing a petition to becoming someone's guardian, we encourage you to obtain a case evaluation with a lawyer from our firm for guidance through the case. Prior to the hearing, social work and medical evaluations will need to be provided to determine whether the individual is truly incompetent. The respondent is also entitled to obtain a lawyer of his or her own choosing to present evidence against the need for a guardian. Guardians are not required to financially support the ward, but only to use the ward's finances for the right purposes.

Once the individual is determined incompetent, a guardian can be appointed to manage his or her affairs. During the hearing, the clerk can appoint a guardian of the person, a guardian of the estate, or a general guardian. The guardian of the person possesses authority to make decisions regarding everyday decisions in a ward's personal life, including his or her medical care. The guardian of the estate will have the ability to manage the ward's assets, including income and property. General guardians possess powers of both the guardian of the person and the guardian of the estate.

Contact us today for further information regarding guardianships.

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