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Changes to Pennsylvania guardianship law

On Behalf of | Jul 1, 2024 | Guardianships

Pennsylvania recently made significant changes to its guardianship law.

These updates aim to improve the protection and support for individuals who need guardians.

Enhanced rights protection

According to WESA News, the goal of the changes is to make guardianship a last resort. The first major change focuses on the rights of individuals under guardianship. The new law emphasizes the importance of protecting their rights and ensuring their well-being. Guardians must now provide detailed reports on the physical and mental condition of the person under their care.

Rigorous appointment process

Another important change is the introduction of a more rigorous process for appointing guardians. The court will now require a thorough investigation into the potential guardian’s background. This investigation includes checking criminal records, financial stability and personal references. This helps ensure that only qualified and trustworthy individuals can become guardians.

Mandatory guardian training

The law also introduces mandatory training for all new guardians. This training covers topics such as the responsibilities of a guardian, how to handle financial matters and how to make decisions in the best interest of the person under guardianship.

Increased monitoring and oversight

The new law also improves the monitoring of guardians. The court will conduct regular reviews of guardianship arrangements to ensure compliance with all requirements. Guardians must submit annual reports detailing their actions and decisions. This increased oversight helps prevent abuse and neglect.

Alternatives to full guardianship

The new law also provides more options for less restrictive alternatives to full guardianship. Courts can now consider alternatives such as limited guardianship, where the guardian has authority only over certain aspects of the individual’s life. This allows individuals to retain some independence and make decisions on their own.

People who may need a guardian should be aware of the changes in Pennsylvania law.