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What is the process for becoming my uncle’s guardian?

My uncle has been significantly declining over the past year. I would like to become his guardian. I know he needs assistance with his personal finances and overall healthcare. What is the process for becoming his guardian?

– Antonio, Oak Park

Antonio, thank you for your question. You can petition the court to become the guardian of his person and his estate. The petition should include what incapacities your uncle suffers from and what you are looking to assist him with. This way you may be able to handle his finances and potentially determine where he will go for healthcare, assisted living, etc. The court will select a Guardian Ad Litem to look out for the best interest of your uncle. He or she will talk with your uncle, other relatives, friends, neighbors, etc. Ultimately, the Guardian Ad Litem will draft a report to provide a recommendation to the court of who should be appointed guardian. The court will then make its decision from there. However, you also need to see if your uncle has any Power of Attorney for Health Care or Power of Attorney for Property documents available. If so, the individual specified in said documents would be responsible for these decisions.