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What is a Guardian’s Role in a Will?

What is a Guardian’s Role in a Will?

Attorney L. Reed Bloodworth is the Founder and CEO of Bloodworth Law, PLLC, with offices in Orlando, Florida, and Winter Haven. Reed discusses what is a guardian’s role in a will?

Establishing a Guardian

The guardian named in the will is the assumed guardian. The person named must still qualify in the same way as any other appointed guardian

A guardianship must still be established. This means that the person named in the will to be the guardian must petition the court for guardianship.

The will can name a different guardian of the person than a guardian of the property.  

Benefits of Naming a Guardian

The advantage of naming a guardian in the will is that the parents know who they believe would be the best guardian of their child or children, or the person who they are caring for.

Another advantage is that a guardianship helps eliminate arguments within the family as to who should be the guardian.

Preneed Guardianship

An alternative to naming a guardian in the will is to name a Preneed Guardian, which means to plan a guardian prior to death. 

Both parents must sign a declaration in the presence of two witnesses naming a preneed guardian. The document must be recorded in the clerk’s office.

Upon death or incapacity of both parents, the preneed guardian assumes the duties of the guardian.

Formal Petitioning is Still Required

The preneed guardian then has 20 days to apply for confirmation of appointment. Again, this is the formal petitioning for guardianship.

The court is not obligated to follow the written declaration, but by naming the guardian, this creates a rebuttable presumption of qualification.  

It’s never been more important that your probate and estate planning documents comply with Florida law. Talk with an experienced attorney to protect you and your loved ones.

The Bloodworth Law team handles guardianship, probate, and estate planning services for families and individuals across Florida. 

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