When a child’s parents are unable to care for them, the court may appoint a guardian to provide for the child’s needs.
Guardianship can be either temporary or permanent, depending on the circumstances. Here’s what you need to know about the difference between temporary and permanent guardianship.
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Definition of Temporary Guardianship
Temporary guardianship is a short-term arrangement that gives a caregiver the legal authority to care for a child.
It can be granted for a specific amount of time, such as 90 days, or until a certain event occurs, such as a parent’s return from military deployment.
Temporary guardianship may also be granted in an emergency situation, such as when a parent is hospitalized or incarcerated.
Definition of Permanent Guardianship
Permanent guardianship, on the other hand, is a long-term arrangement that gives a caregiver the legal authority to care for a child until they reach adulthood.
In some cases, permanent guardianship may be granted when a child’s parents are unable to care for them due to illness, addiction, or other issues.
Unlike adoption, however, permanent guardianship does not terminate the parental rights of the child’s biological parents.
Requirements for Temporary Guardianship
To obtain temporary guardianship, the caregiver must file a petition with the court and demonstrate that they have a legitimate reason for seeking guardianship.
They must also provide evidence that the child’s parents are unable to care for them, such as a letter from a doctor or proof of incarceration.
The court will then hold a hearing to determine if temporary guardianship is in the best interests of the child.
Requirements for Permanent Guardianship
Obtaining permanent guardianship is a more complex process. The caregiver must file a petition with the court and demonstrate that the child’s parents are unable or unwilling to care for them.
The court will then hold a hearing to determine if permanent guardianship is in the best interests of the child. In some cases, the court may appoint a guardian ad litem to represent the child’s interests during the hearing.
Responsibilities of Temporary Guardians
Temporary guardians are responsible for the day-to-day care of the child, such as providing food, shelter, and medical care. They are also responsible for making decisions about the child’s education, healthcare, and other needs.
However, temporary guardianship does not give the caregiver the right to make permanent changes to the child’s living situation or make major medical decisions without the consent of the child’s parents or the court.
Responsibilities of Permanent Guardians
Permanent guardians have more extensive responsibilities, as they are responsible for providing for the child until they reach adulthood.
This includes providing for the child’s physical, emotional, and financial needs. The guardian may also be responsible for making decisions about the child’s education, medical care, and other needs.
However, the guardian must still respect the child’s relationship with their biological parents, and should work to maintain that relationship whenever possible