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Guardianship & Trustee Services

MonarchCare offers maximum protection to the individual who cannot protect themselves, for whatever reason, from being taken advantage of. One of the unique features of MonarchCare is our Guardianship Service. Many human service agencies serve children or the elderly, persons with mental illness or physical/developmental disabilities, but only MonarchCare offers all these persons the comprehensive and critically needed service of legal guardianship. Learn more about these services below:

Support for Other Guardians

We offer guardianship support services for persons who serve as legal guardians to family or friends. Because of our experience, we can assist the non-professional guardian with the initial and annual court reports and guide them through the confusing legal, financial and healthcare arenas. All our staff is trained as Professional Guardians, some are educators for the state-mandated guardian training courses as well. As such, we complete the required reports and access the legal system every day, so for us it is easy and fast. We can truly be an asset to the non-professional guardian, often at a much lower cost than that of the average attorney or accountant and can be paid out of the guardianship assets.

MonarchCare as the Guardian

A guardian is a person appointed by the court who is responsible for the financial and/or personal matters of a third person who is adjudicated as unable to manage their own affairs. Because guardianship removes a person’s rights, it is used only as a last resort, to protect the most vulnerable of individuals. However, if an individual is legally incapacitated, has no advance directives, and is non-compliant with the necessary assistance to provide for their well-being, then guardianship may be the only alternative to keep him or her safe.

Guardians step in when:

  • Family disagrees on plan of care
  • There are no family members to assist with health, financial or personal matters
  • Property and assets must be protected and managed
  • An individual is vulnerable for exploitation

This is an important and very complex service, which requires careful consideration and understanding by the person or their family member of the person being considered for guardianship protection, or the professional protecting their client’s interests. Sometimes the court appoints MonarchCare as legal guardian when families disagree, or the existing guardian must be removed. Oftentimes we serve those individuals with no one else willing or able to assist them with their health, financial or personal care needs.

MonarchCare has several Nationally Certified Guardians (NCG) on staff; is a Registered Guardian with the State of Florida and a proud member of the National Guardian Association at the national, state and local levels. Several of our senior management team has served in leadership roles in guardianship organization, as well. (See “Our Staff” for details.) In addition, we require staff members to take the Florida-mandated 40-hour professional guardian course within one year of joining the organization. MonarchCare guardians are respected for their professionalism, integrity and experience. Our principal guardians are also distinguished as educators for the state-mandated Professional Guardian training courses. MonarchCare has trained more than 2,000 guardians, helped develop the Professional Guardian Competency exam and provides educational programs throughout the State of Florida.

How Guardianship Works in Florida

Guardianship is a legal mechanism, governed by Florida Law, F.S. §393 and §744. All guardians are court-appointed – there is no formal type of guardianship that does not enjoy the supervision of the Florida Judiciary. Since guardianship is an extremely intrusive and costly procedure, any alternative used to avoid the process should always be contemplated. For more details about guardianship in Florida, feel free to download any of the following documents.

Guardianship Alternatives

Independence and self-determination are important to all people. There are several methods and tools used to avoid Guardianship, which should only be used as a last resort. Sometimes a person who would otherwise need a guardian can be served in a less restrictive way.

In Florida, even if an individual lacks capacity, the court must determine if there is a less restrictive alternative to a guardianship. Advance directives are documents that enable you to give directions about your future financial and medical care. These documents are usually the only tools that the legal system will use to avoid a guardianship.

Everyone should be familiar with these options, whether you're concerned about a friend or family member, or you're planning your future. And keep in mind any adult may face incapacity, it's not just an issue for the elderly.

Once you have an advance directive, be sure to give copies to your family, close friends, and your physician so they will be aware of your wishes. Using a document such as a Life Values History (see below) will help your designee immensely if s/he is ever faced with making a decision on your behalf.

Here is some information on specific alternatives to guardianship:

Trustee Services

In our ongoing effort to meet the needs of our community, MonarchCare now provides trustee services. We specialize in the smaller sized trust as well as trusts for beneficiaries with unique or special needs requiring high levels of management and/or administration.

Our fees are lower than those of most banks with a very low minimum fee. Having access to our Care Managers and Financial Specialists also offers a depth of knowledge in care services, community resources and public benefits not often found in a bank. (See Trustee Fee Schedule)

  1. Care Management
  2. Personalized Financial Services