Revoking a Legal Guardianship

By Sydelle John

Revoking a legal guardianship can be a complicated endeavor. However, when done with the help of an experienced attorney, the process can be straightforward. Eliminating the issues that created the guardianship can convince the court to remove the arrangement.

What Is a Guardianship?

A guardianship is created when a court assigns a person to manage the affairs and welfare of another, known as a ward. The ward is typically a minor, but can be an adult who is physically or developmentally disabled. The arrangement may be temporary or permanent, with the latter requiring a hearing to determine whether the guardianship should last for a longer period of time.

Why Is a Guardianship Necessary?

For a minor, a guardianship may be established if either one or both birth parents cannot provide stability. To prove this, the person seeking a guardianship ruling must show that the parents lack regular jobs or live with others who endanger the child. If the potential guardian can also show that she is the child’s primary caregiver or that the parents have abandoned the child, the court may grant the request. Abandonment is commonly proven by the unexplained absence of communication and/or visits for weeks or more at a time. For a disabled adult, a guardianship is typically given to enable parents to make decisions for the individual because he is incapable of caring for himself.

Protect your loved ones. Start My Estate Plan

Revoking a Temporary Guardianship

Depending on the state, a temporary guardianship can last for up to six months or as long as it takes to schedule a hearing for a permanent arrangement. During the temporary guardianship period, the parents must create a stable environment that will encourage the court to return their child to them. This can be accomplished by maintaining employment, avoiding legal problems and maintaining a safe home, among other things. For the follow-up hearing, the parents must petition the court to revoke the guardianship. The parents must provide evidence such as witnesses and sworn affidavits from people who attest to their ability to properly care for the child.

Revoking A Permanent Guardianship

Revoking a permanent guardianship is harder than revoking a temporary one, particularly for a minor. This is because by the time a permanent guardianship is created, the ward has lived apart from his parents for a long time. The court must consider whether revocation will create instability because the child is being removed from a familiar environment. In order to have the guardianship lifted, the parents need to prove they can provide stability and it is in the best interest of the child to live with them. If the child has siblings living with the parents, it will buttress their argument. Completion of a rehabilitation program and support from a therapist is also helpful. The guardianship of a disabled ward is lifted if he proves he has regained full capacity and is capable of caring for himself.

Protect your loved ones. Start My Estate Plan
Can a Legal Guardianship Expire?


Related articles

California Laws on Teenage Custody Wishes

Custody determinations often have a significant impact on the life of a child. For that reason, California law provides judges with the discretion to consider a teenager's preference, if the child is capable of making a reasonable choice. Also, teenagers 14 and older may generally participate in the proceedings and offer input, regardless of whether the court ultimately considers the child's preference.

Parental Visitation Rights in New Jersey

Public policy in New Jersey holds that both parents should be regularly involved in their child's life. When one parent has sole custody of the child, the other parent is usually granted visitation. Even in cases where domestic violence or mental health issues are present, New Jersey offers supervised visitation programs to ensure children still have contact with both parents.

California's Laws on Custody and Visitation for the Noncustodial Parent

Navigating child custody laws in California can seem like a daunting task for parents. For the non-custodial parent, it is important to understand the differences between physical and legal custody and the factors that play a role in determining shared and sole custody arrangements. It is also important to recognize that the process does not necessarily end with the initial custody orders; changes in circumstances, including the relocation of the custodial parent, can require repeat contact with the family court.

LegalZoom. Legal help is here. Start Here. Wills. Trusts. Attorney help. Wills & Trusts

Related articles

Custody & Visitation of Infant Children in Divorce

Child custody and visitation cases can become contentious, especially when they involve an infant. Early attachment and ...

Can People With Legal Guardianship Take Children Out of State?

Guardianship is a legal arrangement established by a court in which a nonparent takes over the responsibilities of ...

How Do Grandparents Get Custody of Their Grandchildren in South Carolina?

In certain limited circumstances, child custody can be awarded to grandparents. However, obtaining this arrangement in ...

How to Get Child Custody Rights Revoked in Arkansas

Revoking custody rights -- often a part of terminating parental rights altogether -- is a serious legal move that ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED