Our attorneys serve families in Maryland, who need assistance with all types of family law matters, including prenuptial agreements, guardianship, and adoption. While divorce law is not a large part of our practice, we provide services for uncontested divorces and review of mediated agreements for existing clients and for referrals from existing clients.
If a person is unable to make important decisions for their personal care or their property and finances, a judge appoints a guardian to make those decisions for them. There are two types of guardianships in Maryland: guardianship of the person and guardianship of the property.
We can advise clients on the need for Guardianship, represent you before the court in a petition to the court to obtain Guardianship, advise you of your role and obligations as Guardian if appointed and assist you with the annual reporting requirements to the court.
Guardian of a Minor Child
Legal guardianship is a court order that says someone who is not the child’s parent is in charge of taking care of the child. Legal guardians have a lot of the same rights and responsibilities as parents. A custodian is named or appointed to manage the child’s assets until the child reaches an appropriate age. If both parents die prior to leaving a will or appointing a guardian, the court will appoint one for the children.
Guardian of Disabled Adults
Courts typically appoint guardians for adults in instances of incapacity or disability. This includes mental and physical disability or incapacity involving severe or long-term conditions which impose great limitations upon an individual’s ability to take care of themselves, earn a living, express themselves verbally, conduct financial transactions, and live independently of the care of others. The desires of the incapacitated or disabled person are given primary consideration. Guardians are only granted those powers necessary to accomplish tasks the incapacitated or disabled person cannot accomplish for themselves.
Adoption petitions in Maryland are rule-specific and it is important to work with a knowledgeable attorney who can help you understand all of the legal requirements. An adoption should be a time of happiness and excitement for families. We can guide you through the process of adopting a child.
The most common form of adoption in the United States is a stepparent adoption. By adopting their stepchild, the stepparent agrees to be fully responsible for their spouse’s child. The biological parent not living with the child gives up their rights and responsibilities for the child, including child support. Both biological parents, if living, must consent or agree to the adoption, except in special circumstances.