If one of your loved ones has become unable to manage their own affairs, due to illness, injury or some other condition, it may be time for you to become their legal guardian in order to protect them. This can be a profound act of love, but it’s also a difficult position to put yourself in. Fortunately, Indiana’s state government offers some help.
In 2013, Indiana started to receive funding for the adult guardianship office, which falls under the jurisdiction of the state Supreme Court. The adult guardianship office provides resources for courts on issues that are related to adult guardianship and the funds from that office are administered to the various programs throughout Indiana.
There are several useful programs that help when it comes to adult guardianship issues.
- VASIA Programs: These programs are the Volunteer Advocates for Seniors & Incapacitated Adults, or VASIA. This year alone, over $1.2 million was given to 20 different volunteer-based guardianship programs, which serves 52 different counties. These programs help over 800 incapacitated adults in Indiana who are not able to make financial and personal decisions about their care.
- Adult Guardianship Symposium: Annually, the Adult Guardianship Office holds a symposium for guardians, practitioners, volunteers, protected individuals and other people to whom the symposium is relevant. The key issues in adult guardianship are covered in the symposium.
- Guardianship registry: The Adult Guardianship Office has established an online guardianship registry, which provides valuable, timely information to the public on the status of current guardianships across the State of Indiana. It is also a useful vehicle for hospitals, law enforcement, banks, mental health facilities, government agencies and other institutions and people who provide service. It is also an important vehicle for the courts.
- Guardianship task force: This is a multidisciplinary group of private and public stakeholders and advocates who get together to carefully look at relevant public policy and service issues and needs of the adult guardianship in Indiana.
How do I go about establishing an adult guardianship for my family?
If you are in a situation where one of your loved ones is an adult but still needs a great deal of care and support, an experienced Indiana attorney can be a tremendous source of support in helping you to establish an adult guardianship so that your loved one will always be able to have what they need in order to have the best chance at a good life. In a situation in which the loved one is incapable of making personal or financial decisions for themselves, you can make those decisions and everyone will benefit because of it.