Guardianship Questions & Answers

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What is a Guardian?

A Guardian is appointed by the Court to make decisions on behalf of a person who is unable to take care of themselves.  Guardians are responsible for making decisions about living arrangements, health care, and support services.

The purpose of a Guardian is to promote the well-being of a Protected Person, encouraging as much self-reliance and independence as possible, while ensuring their health and safety. Guardians are accountable to the Court, and must file an annual report on the status of the Guardianship and the well-being of the Protected Person.

What happens if a Guardian moves to another state?

If a Guardian moves to another state the Guardian must inform the Court of their new address and telephone number.  If a Protected Person moves to another state the Guardianship case does not automatically transfer.  The original state retains jurisdiction and the new state may not recognize the Guardianship.  This may cause problems for the Guardian who needs to make medical decisions for the Protected Person.  If the move is permanent paperwork needs to be filed with the Court to transfer the Guardianship.

Transferring a Guardianship can be complicated so it is important for the Guardian to seek legal advice.  In 2009 Oregon adopted the Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act (UAGPPJA) which allows Guardianships to be transferred to other states that have also adopted the Act.  However, legal paperwork must still be filed with the Court.

What should I do if I have a concern about a Guardianship?

If you suspect abuse, neglect or financial exploitation of a Protected Person, or any child or adult, call 1-855-503-SAFE (7233), the hotline for the Oregon Department of Human Services. If you are a health care worker, school employee, or member of one of many other professions, you may be a mandatory reporter. If you are unsure, visit the Oregon DHS site for more information.

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