Some adults lack the capacity to manage all of their property or to take care of their own essential health and safety needs. A resident of Palm Beach Gardens that falls into this description can have a guardian appointed by a court to look after them. If the court determines, after thorough examination, that a person does need a guardian and that no less restrictive alternative is sufficient, then any adult in Florida may be appointed, or relatives of the individual whether or not they live in Florida. Potential guardians may not have a felony conviction and must be capable of exercising the duties of a guardian.
Those duties include handling personal and financial decisions that the individual cannot. Personal decisions include medical decisions and choosing the place of residence and the type of residential setting that is best. Financial decisions include inventorying and investing property so that it can be used for the care of the individual. Reports must be filed each year with the court by the guardian. The guardian may act without supervision, with the exception of a few financial transactions that require court approval.
If an individual wishes to be appointed guardian to care for a relative or other person, they must be represented by an attorney when making application to the court. If the person is appointed, they may be required to furnish a bond and to complete training in their duties as a guardian. If that person later becomes unable to fulfill their duties, they can notify the court of their need to resign. In addition, a guardian who is not properly fulfilling their duties can be removed by the court and a new guardian appointed.