WHERE SHOULD A GUARDIAN ADVOCACY BE ESTABLISHED?
(Guardian Advocacy Series – Part Four)
Guardian advocacy is a special form of guardianship for individuals with developmental disabilities. Like other forms of guardianship, guardian advocacy involves the court appointing one or more individuals (“guardian advocates”) to help take care of the person with a developmental disability (the “ward”).
Florida law requires that a guardian advocacy be set up in the county where the person with developmental disabilities resides. For example, a resident of St. Johns County seeking to become the guardian advocate of a special needs individual living in a group home in Duval County, would work with the court in Duval County to establish and administer the guardian advocacy.
If the guardian advocate is given the right to determine the residence of the ward, as is common, he or she may move the ward to a different county or state. However, the court where the guardian advocacy was set up must be notified and/or give permission for the move. If the guardian advocate is only relocating the ward one county away (i.e. to a county that is adjacent to the ward’s current county) then the guardian advocate only needs to tell the court that the ward has moved, the reasons for moving, and how long the ward is expected to stay in the new county. Alternatively, if the guardian advocate wishes to move the ward to a county that is not next to the ward’s current county or to another state, the court must give permission for the move before it occurs.
Our firm is happy to assist with guardian advocacies for individuals who reside in Duval, St. Johns, Clay, Bradford, Baker, and Nassau counties.
This blog is the fourth part of a series on Guardian Advocacy. One final part will follow next month. If you have individual questions about guardian advocacy, please feel free to call and make an appointment.