What are Guardianships?

Guardianships are court-supervised proceedings that allow an adult to care for and/or manage the finances of another person. A guardianship is usually not necessary for an adult who has an effective durable power of attorney. If an adult or vulnerable child in your family requires legal intervention because of incapacity, Washington attorney Jennifer Rydberg can capably handle your legal needs. Based in Kent, Washington, she represents clients in the Seattle area and throughout King County.

Jennifer works closely with clients in a wide range of estate, guardianship, probate and family law matters. With over 36 years of legal experience, she is in an excellent position to act as your advocate during a difficult family challenge. To schedule an initial consultation with Jennifer Rydberg today, call 425-235-5535.

Establishing Legal Guardianship

Jennifer Rydberg is experienced in all aspects of guardianship proceedings. A guardianship may be required for:

  • Children who are beneficiaries of a litigation settlement
  • Developmentally disabled adults
  • Incapacitated adults without a power of attorney
  • Minor children who have lost a parent
  • Minor children who receive an inheritance outside of a testamentary trust

A guardianship may be limited to personal affairs or health care decisions or it may be a full guardianship in which the legal guardian oversees every aspect of a person's life — living arrangements, medical care, and management of income and assets.

Any concerned person can initiate a guardianship proceeding. All immediate family members are notified, and the subject of the proceedings is appointed a guardian ad litem to ensure that his or her interests are protected.

A guardian is subject to court supervision. Most financial assets are blocked or bonded. Once designated, the guardian manages the personal life of the incapacitated person. The guardian of the estate is responsible for management of the estate and filing periodic financial accountings and protects the incapacitated person's assets and income. Jennifer Rydberg advises guardians of their duties and reporting obligations.

Avoiding Guardianship Disputes

Guardianship proceedings are time-consuming and expensive and can create hard feelings among family members with differing opinions about a loved one's care. The process can be avoided by anticipating these concerns through a power of attorney and other estate planning measures. For example, a testamentary trust or living trust can avoid the expense and court oversight of a guardianship for a minor child's inheritance and can extend trust management well beyond the age of 18.

If an estate plan has not been enacted in your case and a guardianship proceeding is necessary, Jennifer Rydberg is a compassionate lawyer who will work diligently on your behalf to accomplish your goals and protect your rights.

Guardian Training

In King County, all lay guardians are required to view a training video and file proof of doing so with the court.

Contact Jennifer Rydberg

For more information about legal guardianship or for swift action in a sensitive family situation, call Seattle guardianships attorney Jennifer C. Rydberg at 425-235-5535 or contact her by email.