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Step One Before Filing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Minor Guardianship Without a Conservator

Step One: Before Filing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Complete the following tasks -

  1. Fingerprints.  If you are NOT a blood relative, you must be fingerprinted and have a background check completed by the Arizona Department of Public Safety and the FBI.  An issued fingerprint card will have to be filed with the court; some courts request that it is filed with the petition, while others will give a time frame of when it must be submitted. Example - In Maricopa county, you have 5 days after filing your petition to submit your fingerprint card.
  2. Fill out the Forms.  Using BLACK INK complete the following forms:
    1. Juvenile Guardianship Information Sheet
    2. Petition for Appointment of Guardian of a Minor
    3. Affidavit of Person to be Appointed Guardian
    4. Consent of Parent to Guardianship
  3. Make Copies.  Make 3 copies of the completed forms listed above, so you will have 4 total.  Originals - filed with the court, 1 - for your records, 2 - for the biological parents

Resources:

Guardianship Forms

Guardianship FAQ

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Step Four Before the Court Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Minor Guardianship Without a Conservator

Step Four: Before the Court Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Complete the following tasks -

  1. Let the Court Know.  At least 15 days in advance, let the court know if you need:
    1. A language or sign language interpreter
    2. A disability that requires special accommodations
  2. Recording Request.  If you wish to have the hearing recorded or transcribed, some courts need advanced notice to ensure that processes are in place prior to the hearing.  Contact the Court at least 15 days in advance to learn what the process is and what is needed to receive a court record.
  3. Prepare Testimony.  Be able to explain:
    1. Why the guardianship is needed?
    2. Why you should be appointed guardian?
    3. Would witnesses help clarify your position and assist your case?
  4. Documents.  Bring the following documents with you:
    1. Petition for Appointment of a Guardian of a Minor
    2. Affidavit of Person to be Appointed Guardian
    3. Notarized, Consent of the Mother (if applicable) with an extra copy for the Court
    4. Notarized, Consent of the Father (if applicable) with an extra copy for the Court
    5. United States or State issued identification
    6. Birth Certificates for each child listed in the petition
    7. If applicable, Death Certificates of the birth parent(s) with an extra copy for the Court
    8. If applicable, United States issued visa or permanent legal resident card for the child(ren)
  5. Service of Documents.  Proof that the following were properly served:
    1. Notice of Hearing
    2. Proof of Notice of Hearing
    3. Signed Waiver of Notice
    4. Signed Acceptance of Service
    5. If applicable, Affidavit Supporting Publication
    6. If applicable, Affidavit of Publication
  6. Photo Identification.  You will need a government issued photo identification card.

If you do not bring the correct documents, your hearing may be cancelled or reset to another date!

Resources:

Guardianship Forms

Guardianship FAQ

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Guardianship Disclosure Affidavit

When completing the Disclosure Affidavit an explanation needs to be given to anything you mark "FALSE" in an attached document.

The following are examples of information required:

  1. As to each felony that you have been convicted, you must say:
    1. Nature of the offense
    2. Name and address of the sentencing court
    3. Case number
    4. Date of conviction
    5. Terms of the sentence
    6. Name and telephone number of any current probation or parole officer
    7. Reasons why the conviction should not disqualify you from appointment
  2. If you have acted as guardian or conservator within 3 years before filing this petition, you must say:
    1. Names of individuals for whom you are currently serving, and court case numbers
    2. Names of individuals for whom your appointment has been terminated within the 3-year period, and the court case number
  3. If you do not have the required information or do not understand the powers and duties of a guardian, explain how you intend to obtain and/or understand this information
  4. State the total number of persons for whom you have had power of attorney in the last 3 years.  If you have had power of attorney for the person you are trying to get guardianship of, explain:
    1. The date the power of attorney was signed
    2. Place it was signed
    3. Actions you have taken pursuant to the power of attorney
    4. Whether the power of attorney is currently in effect
  5. State the reason you are listed in the Elder Abuse Registry
  6. List the names and reasoning any business you one is listed in the Elder Abuse Registry
  7. If you have been a guardian before and not filed an annual report/accounting on time or neglected to file:
    1. List the name and location of the court
    2. Name and case number of the files in which you were delinquent
  8. If you have been removed by the Court as a guardian list:
    1. Name and location of the court
    2. Name and case number
    3. Why you were removed
  9. If you or your business has received a gift(s) with a value over $100, you must state:
    1. Number of times you received a gift(s)
    2. What was the gift(s)
    3. Date of the gift(s)
    4. Value of the gift(s)
  10. If you or your personal business has been named as a personal representative, trustee, or beneficiary explain the number of occasions
  11. If you currently own or are involved in any business that provides housing, health care, nursing care, assisted living, etc... list the name(s) and address(es) and the extent and type of work/association with them

 

 

Step Two Filing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Minor Guardianship Without a Conservator

Step Two: File the Papers at the Court

Complete the following tasks -

  1. Locate the Correct Courthouse.  Paperwork should be filed with the Juvenile Court in your county, or at Superior Court if a Juvenile Court does not exist. Call to confirm the filing location before traveling to the courthouse.
  2. File the Correct Forms. Bring ALL copies and the originals to the courthouse.  The Clerk will stamp all documents and return the copies to you for your files and service.
    1. Juvenile Guardianship Information Sheet
    2. Petition for Appointment of Guardian of a Minor
    3. Affidavit of the Person to be Appointed Guardian
    4. Consent of the Mother (if applicable)
    5. Consent of the Father (if applicable)
    6. Fingerprint Card (if obtained in time)
  3. Pay Fees.  Pay the required fees of the court or, if you cannot afford the filing or service fees, you may request a fee waiver or deferral.  Requests must be made at filing.

Resources:

Guardianship Forms

Fee Waiver and Deferral Forms

Guardianship FAQ

Arizona Revised Statute § 14-5106

State Fee Lists

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Step Five After the Court Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Minor Guardianship Without a Conservator

Step Five After the Court Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Complete the following tasks -

  1. Go to the Clerk of the Court.  If the Judge grants the Petition for Appointment of Guardian of a Minor, the Clerk will:
    1. Review the Order of Appointment
    2. Ask you to sign an Acceptance of Appointment
    3. Issue conformed or certified copies of the Court Order
  2. Make a Payment. If the judge did not waive the bond, you will have to satisfy the bond before you are issued your letters of appointment.
  3. Changing Your Address.  As guardian, you must communicate, in writing, any changes to your or the address during the time of your appointment. You must include your case number on the change of address notice.
  4. Annual Report.  Every year, before the anniversary of your appointment, you must file an Annual Report of the Guardian.

Resources:

Guardianship Forms

Guardianship FAQ

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Guardianship Responsibilities of a Minor

Guardianship Responsibilities of a Minor

Legal Decision Making

You are responsible for all of the decision relating to the minor.  The parents of the minor can no longer make these decision while there is a guardianship.  The rights are suspended of the parent - not terminated - as long as a guardian is appointed for a minor. If you wish, you may ask the parents for their opinions about decisions relating to the minor.

Education

You are responsible for the education of the minor.  You determine where the minor attends school.  You are the advocate for the minor within the school system and are responsible for attending parent-teacher conferences.  Of the minor has special educational needs, you must help in obtaining services.

Medical

You are responsible for meeting the medical needs of the minor. This includes making all decisions regarding care for medical, dental, and vision.  You must arrange for all necessary services and maintain regular contact with the doctors of the minor.

Financial Support

Even when the minor has a guardian, the parents continue to be financially responsible for the support of the minor.  As a guardian, you may obtain child support from the parents.  For more information, contact the Department of Economic Security at 1-800-882-4145.

You are responsible for managing any financial support for the minor, such as child support from the parent, public benefits, or money from private sources.  Any money received must first be used for the current needs of the minor for support, care, and education.  If there is money left over, it must be saved for the future needs of the minor.

Guardians must always keep the minor's money separate from their own, use it only for the minor's expenses, and keep records of how the money is used and invested.  If the minor is entitled to get more than $10,000 per year, accumulates more than $10,000 in excess money, or acquires land, a conservator must be appointed.  Conservators can be the same person as the guardian.

Community Resources

Some minors in need of a guardianship may come from troubled environments.  If the minor has special needs, you must try to meet those needs or obtain appropriate services.  You should check with the Arizona Department of Economic Security for a referral to agencies that can help you and the minor.

Driver's License

You have the authority to consent, or refuse to consent, to the minor's application for a driver's license.  If you give consent by signing the minor's application for a permit or driver's license, you become responsible for any damage caused by the minor's negligent or willful misconduct.  If you maintain appropriate automobile insurance for the minor  you will not be help personally liable.

Marriage

You have the right to consent, or refuse to consent, to the marriage of the minor.  If the minor enters into a valid marriage, the minor becomes emancipated and the guardianship ends.

Misconduct of the Minor

You are responsible for any harm or damage caused by the intentional misconduct of the minor that results in any injury, whether or not you could have anticipated the misconduct.  This includes theft or shoplifting.  The maximum you may be held liable for is $10,000 for each instance of misconduct be the minor.

Change of Address

You must notify the Court immediately in writing if the minor's address or your address changes.

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Step Three Request a Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Minor Guardianship Without a Conservator

Step Three: Request a Hearing for the Guardianship of a Minor

Complete the following tasks -

  1. File Certificate of Readiness.  After filing the correct forms and subsequent copies, you must complete, sign, and file a Certificate of Readiness with the Clerk.
    1. This form signifies that you have all forms available and ready to have a hearing

Resources:

Guardianship Forms

Guardianship FAQ

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