You may find yourself in a situation in which you want to seek guardianship of a minor child, possibly a family member. This is an appropriate course of action if you want to support and care for a child who is under the age of 18 and cannot, for any reason, live with his or her parents. Seeking guardianship can be a complex process, but it may be the right way to protect the interests of the child and your own interests.

A guardian is someone who would act in the best interests of someone who is not able to make decisions for himself or herself. As the guardian of a minor child, you would be responsible for the care of that child, his or her financial needs, medical care and more. It is not an easy task, and you will have certain obligations you will have to fulfill.

Facts about guardianship

Pursuing guardianship of a minor child is not something to take lightly. As the legal guardian, you will carry an immense amount of responsibility. Your obligations to the minor will only end in the following situations:

  • The child dies
  • The child turns 18 years of age
  • There is no longer a need to oversee his or her finances because of depletion of funds
  • A judge decides there is no longer a need for the child to have a guardian
  • You ask a court to relieve you of your role as guardian

Having guardianship over a child is not the same thing as adopting the child. If you are considering this step or wondering if adoption is a better option, it is beneficial to first seek a full understanding of your options and your potential role in both scenarios.

Guidance for complex legal concerns

There are a wide range of circumstances in which it would be appropriate to seek guardianship of a child under the age of 18. However, like other legal process, this can be a complex legal undertaking, and you may not want to walk through it alone. It is prudent to seek guidance from an experienced Ohio legal professional who can guide you toward the most beneficial outcome for your individual situation.

When you seek the help of an attorney, you can also learn more about your job as the guardian. This includes how to keep up with your actions on behalf of the child and account for the decisions you made regarding finances, medical care, housing and more.