Family Law


What is Guardianship?  
Guardianship refers to the legal appointment of one person (the guardian) to take care of and make decisions for another person (the ward). In Nevada, the court determines whether the prospective ward is capable of making decisions. If the court deems the prospective ward legally incapacitated, a guardian will be appointed. The guardian assumes responsibility for the ward’s healthcare, residential concerns, and financial well-being. Burton & Reardon, a reputable Las Vegas guardianship law firm, specializes in various guardianship issues. Our experienced attorneys can assist you in determining the need for guardianship and guide you through the appointment process. Contact us at 702-213-0303 to schedule a consultation with a knowledgeable Las Vegas guardianship lawyer. 

Who Needs A Guardian?  

Adult Wards  
There are several reasons why adults may require guardianship. With an aging population, there is a growing need for proper care for senior adults. Conditions such as dementia, Alzheimer’s, and physical disabilities due to age or trauma may necessitate guardianship. Additionally, adults of any age struggling with substance addiction that hampers their ability to make decisions may require guardianship. Severe illnesses, injuries, and long-term medical care can also lead to the need for guardianship. In cases of severe developmental disabilities, primary caregivers, often parents, may eventually require guardianship themselves. 

Minor Wards  
Minors are typically under the guardianship of their parents. However, if the parents become incapacitated or pass away, the children may become wards of the state unless designated guardians are named in the parents’ wills. In situations where parents are abusive or unfit to serve as guardians, third parties can seek guardianship over the minors. 

What Type of Guardianship is Needed?  
General Guardianship General guardianship is the most common form of guardianship. It encompasses decision-making authority over all aspects of the ward’s life, including personal well-being, support, healthcare, education, and finances. For adults, general guardianship may be indefinite and usually arises from intervening situations like accidents or debilitating illnesses. When a minor reaches adulthood, general guardianship typically ends unless specific circumstances, such as mental or physical disabilities, necessitate a new guardianship appointment. 

Special Guardianship  
Special guardianship involves separating the responsibilities of the guardian into two categories: the person and the estate. In some cases, the ward may be capable of making certain decisions but not others. For adult guardianship, this means assigning a guardian for the person’s well-being and another guardian for financial matters. For instance, an adult with a gambling addiction may require a guardian to oversee their finances while they can manage other aspects of their life. 

Temporary Guardianship  
Temporary guardianship can be granted in Nevada for specific situations. For example, if both parents in a military family are deployed, they can assign temporary guardianship for their minor children until they return. Temporary guardianship automatically ends once the parents resume custody of the children. 

How Do I Become a Guardian?  
If you are at least 18 years old and believe someone you know requires guardianship, you must file a petition with the Nevada family court. However, you must be capable and have the means to assume care and control of the person in question. Certain individuals are ineligible for guardianship, including those who cannot provide adequate care, habitual drug or alcohol users, individuals convicted of violence or felony, and those with suspended professional licenses. Seeking legal guidance is advisable when considering guardianship, and the experienced Las Vegas legal guardianship attorneys at Burton & Reardon can provide assistance in determining the need and extent of guardianship. 

Can a Guardianship Appointment be Resisted or Overturned?  
If you are the subject of a guardianship suit and believe that guardianship is unnecessary, you have the right to object to the appointment either before or after it has been granted. The skilled Las Vegas guardianship attorneys at Burton & Reardon are well-versed in state and local laws and can help you with your objection. For any questions or to schedule a consultation with an experienced Las Vegas legal guardianship attorney, please call our office at 702-213-0303.