In New York State, Article 81 of the Mental Hygiene Law is designed to protect those individuals in our society who can no longer care for themselves. Under Article 81, the court can appoint a family member or anyone they see fit to care for another individual who has been found by the Court to be incapacitated, (also referred to as "alleged incapacitated person" or "AIP").
The court can tailor the powers granted to the guardian to meet only those needs that the incapacitated individual can no longer manage. For example, guardians can be appointed for the "property" and the guardian will perform financial tasks on behalf of the AIP; a guardian can be appointed for the "person" and manage healthcare decisions for the AIP, or a guardian can be appointed for both "property" and "person". Again, these are general categories ("property"/"person") under which the court can still tailor and set specific powers within those categories. Guardianships are often pursued to care for the elderly, but they may also be appropriate to care for the needs of a disabled individual. If you have any questions or concerns about a family member or loved one, please do not hesitate to contact us.