Middle Ground: Temporary or Emergency Guardianship

kennebec county superior court

NOTE: Temporary guardianship allows the court to move quickly during an emergency situation on short notice to interested parties & before a hearing.

Temporary Guardianship is only granted by the Probate Court in emergency situations to prevent serious, immediate, and irreparable harm to the alleged incapacitated person’s health or finances. What types of situations might require the appointment of a temporary guardian? They include:

  • A person who needs an emergency medical procedure when the person is not able to give informed consent.
  • When assets are being drained from the person’s solely-owned bank account, someone needs to work with the bank to stop withdrawals by an unauthorized person, or re-direct an automatic deposit to another account until the general guardianship hearing date.

A temporary guardianship appointment may also be necessary when an at-risk incapacitated adult has no guardian or when the already appointed guardian is not effectively performing his or her duties.

How do you decide if temporary/emergency guardianship is the right choice? 

Some of the questions you may want to ask include:

NOTE: The Probate Court will make a final decision on whether temporary guardianship is the right choice.

  • Is the incapacitated adult involved in an emergency or life-threatening situation?
  • Is the incapacitated person in immediate physical danger?
  • Are the assets of the incapacitated person being actively wasted?
  • Is an already appointed guardian not effectively performing his/her duties and putting the incapacitated person in danger of draining the incapacitated person’s assets?

Back to Middle Ground 9Back   NextForward to next page