When hearing discussions about guardianships, the thoughts of many people in Florida may initially turn to guardianships of minor children. Another common situation resulting in the need for designation of a guardian is incapacity due to a disability or a mental illness. With a growing elderly population, such guardianships can be created to help provide care for aging adults.
Florida parents can often be so consumed with the everyday responsibilities of raising their children and managing their families that the thought of future estate planning gets put aside. However, the possibility of tragic accidents or illnesses always exists. For this reason, it is important for families to look ahead and make plans for their children in the unfortunate event that something happens to the parents and the children still require care.
You and other parents of adult children with special needs often serve numerous important roles in your kids’ lives, providing for their daily care needs as well as becoming their medical and social services advocates. Consequently, it can be difficult to consider your child being cared for by anyone else. The attorneys at Levins & Associates, L.L.C., understand how important it is for families with special needs to establish comprehensive estate planning arrangements that provide for the daily and long-term necessities of adult children.
Exploring a guardianship is especially important if you have loved ones who may not be able to care for themselves. In Florida, there are several groups of people whose needs and interests may need to be protected. Those include the following:
In many situations, once children turn 18, they are no longer legally bound to their parents. However, Florida families with a special needs child will find that their responsibility often extends well into the child’s adulthood. At Levins & Associates, L.L.C., we understand the importance of ensuring that your children will be taken care of no matter what their age or situation.
When a person reaches a point in life that he or she is no longer able to care for him or herself or make important decisions, it’s often left up to a family member to be in charge of that person. Sometimes, a certain family member will be awarded a guardianship over the person who has become unable to care for him or herself. However, sometimes, those decisions can be the source of controversy between different families members with a vested interest.
For many young people and even a good chunk of older people living in Lee County, Florida, drafting a will is likely at the bottom of their to-do list. According to studies conducted recently, it is estimated that only 35% to 45% of American citizens have a will. This may be due to the fact that we don’t necessarily want to think about our own deaths, but it may also be that many don’t think they have enough assets to make it worth their while. However, planning what will happen to your estate after your death can save your loved ones a lot of heartache and frustration and allow them to mourn properly.
Parents often face many difficult decisions for their children such as where the children should be educated, their religious beliefs and medical care. Such decisions can be more complex with a special needs child, especially as they grow and enter adulthood. Parents have a legal responsibility as well as a moral one to make sure that their children receive the best of care as minors. However, when the child reaches legal age, parents may need to take legal steps to retain guardianship of them.