A Guardianship is a legal proceeding whereby another is appointed by a court to exercise certain decision making and control over a person who is legally incapacitated.  The legally incapacitated person is called a ward and once again could be a child or someone who has been deemed mentally incompetent.  The most common example probably occurs when a parents of a minor child are unable for some reason to care for and raise that child.  In such cases, a qualified adult can be appointed guardian to, in layman’s terms, take over the role of the parent.   Guardianships can be temporary or permanent depending on the statutes of the ward.  They can also be contested if the ward does not believe that he or she should have a guardian or the determination of which guardian is disputed.  Guardianships are established and come under the jurisdiction of the probate court in Iowa and are governed by unique rules.  Any interested party can typically be represented by an attorney in these proceedings.

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