How Much Does It Cost to Get a Lawyer for Guardianship?

Hey there! Have you ever found yourself in a situation where someone you care about is unable to make decisions for themselves? It could be an elderly parent, a disabled adult, or even a child who needs extra support.

In these cases, establishing a guardianship might be the best way to ensure their well-being.

But, you might be wondering, “How much does it cost to get a lawyer for guardianship?”

Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered!

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Lawyer for Guardianship?

How Much Does It Cost to Get a Lawyer for Guardianship

In this article, we’ll dive into the world of guardianship and explore the costs associated with hiring a guardianship lawyer.

What Is a Guardianship?

First things first, let’s define what a guardianship is.

In simple terms, guardianship is a legal arrangement where a court appoints someone (the guardian) to make decisions on behalf of another person (the ward) who can’t make those decisions themselves.

The guardian’s role is to protect the ward’s interests and ensure their needs are met.

Types of Guardianships and Guardians

Now, let’s talk about the different types of guardianships and guardians out there.

  • Adult Guardianship

When an adult is unable to take care of themselves due to incapacity or disability, an adult guardianship might be necessary. The court will need proof that the person can’t manage their own affairs before appointing a guardian. The guardian may have full control or limited powers, like making healthcare decisions.

There are two main types of adult guardianship:

  1. Guardianship of the Person: The guardian makes decisions about the ward’s matters, such as their health and well-being.
  2. Guardianship of the Estate: The guardian manages the ward’s property and financial affairs.

  • Child Guardianship

Sometimes, children under 18 may need a guardian to make important decisions for them and provide support.

Just like adult guardianships, there are two types of child guardianships:

  1. Guardianship of the Person: The guardian makes decisions about the child’s health, education, and living arrangements. They may also have physical custody of the child.
  2. Guardianship of the Estate: If a child has significant assets or property, a guardian may be appointed to manage these until the child turns 18.

  • Guardian ad Litem

A Guardian ad Litem is a special type of guardian appointed by the court to represent a child’s best interests during legal proceedings, such as divorce cases or situations involving abuse or neglect.

  • Temporary Guardianship

As the name suggests, a temporary guardianship is a short-term arrangement. This might be necessary when a child’s parents are temporarily unable to care for them or when an individual needs help with decision-making for a brief period.

  • Emergency Guardianship

In urgent situations, like when a child is in imminent danger or someone has a medical emergency, the court can grant emergency guardianship without a hearing.

What Can a Guardian Do?

A guardian’s responsibilities depend on the type of guardianship.

For a guardianship of the person, the guardian may:

  • Provide care and support to the ward.
  • Make decisions about the ward’s healthcare and living arrangements.
  • Ensure the ward has all the necessities.
  • Visit the ward if they live elsewhere.
  • File reports with the court about the ward’s well-being.

For a guardianship of the estate, the guardian’s duties may include:

  • Protecting and maintaining the ward’s property
  • Making financial decisions
  • Handling the estate’s income
  • Distributing assets
  • Getting court approval before selling assets
  • Filing reports with the court

Who is Eligible To Be a Guardian?

Guardians are usually people close to the individual needing guardianship, such as parents, children, or spouses. However, the guardian doesn’t have to be a relative. If no one volunteers, the court may appoint a professional guardian.

Some people are not allowed to be guardians, such as:

  • Minors
  • People with certain felony convictions
  • Those who have committed violent crimes, like domestic violence

The court may also require the guardian to attend training before taking on their role.

How Long Does a Guardianship Last?

The length of a guardianship depends on the type of guardianship and any time limits set by the court.

Type of Guardianship Duration
Adult Guardianship Until the ward recovers or passes away
Child Guardianship Until the child turns 18 or the court deems it no longer necessary
Temporary Guardianship Short-term, unless the court decides a longer guardianship is needed
Emergency Guardianship Short-term, unless the court decides a longer guardianship is needed

How Can a Guardianship Lawyer Help?

While you can establish a guardianship without a lawyer, having one can make the process much smoother. A guardianship lawyer can assist you with:

  • Preparing and filing paperwork.
  • Representing you in court.
  • Helping appoint the right guardian.

A local guardianship lawyer will also be familiar with the laws in your area, which can be a big advantage for your case.

How Much Does a Guardianship Lawyer Cost?

The cost of a guardianship lawyer varies depending on the type of guardianship and the amount of work involved. Generally, full representation can start from $1,500 to $3,000, with additional hourly fees as needed.

However, an unbundled lawyer may be a more affordable option. An unbundled lawyer is like a regular lawyer, but they only handle specific parts of your case while you take care of the rest. This can save you money while still getting the legal help you need.


  • Q: Are there any additional costs besides the lawyer’s fees?

A: Yes, establishing a guardianship involves court fees, which can add to the overall cost.

  • Q: Can I get legal aid for a guardianship case?

A: Depending on your financial situation, you may be eligible for legal aid or pro bono services. Contact your local legal aid organization to see if you qualify.

  • Q: How can I save money on guardianship lawyer fees?

A: Working with an unbundled lawyer and handling some aspects of the case yourself can help reduce costs. You can also shop around and compare fees from different lawyers.

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Establishing guardianship can be a complex and emotional process, but it’s often necessary to protect the interests of someone who can’t make decisions for themselves.

The cost of hiring a guardianship lawyer depends on various factors, but it’s essential to remember that having legal support can make the process much easier.

Whether you choose full representation or work with an unbundled lawyer, make sure to find an attorney who understands your situation and can guide you through the guardianship process.

With the right legal help, you can ensure your loved one receives the care and support they need.

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