What happens if you or someone you love loses the ability to make financial or personal decisions, without a power of attorney or personal directive in place that would appoint an individual to make those decisions?
In such cases, Alberta law allows individuals — usually family members — to apply to be the guardian and/or trustee for the “incapacitated” adult. This application is called a represented adult application because the adult who has lost capacity will need representation in making financial and personal decisions.
A guardian and/or trustee is a fiduciary and must always act in the represented adult’s best interests. Usually, the guardian and/or trustee is a close and trusted family member or friend of the represented adult. An individual can make an application in one of two ways:
A guardian makes medical and personal decisions. Common decisions that a guardian makes include decisions about:
The individual applying to be a guardian must provide a guardianship plan, which contemplates the major decisions the represented adult faces in the next five or six years.
A trusteeship order appointments someone to make financial decisions on behalf of a represented person.
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