It has been almost 2 years since the COVID-19 pandemic impacted human life around the world. No one anticipated the immense effect the pandemic would have on every facet of society including people, the economy, the government, public health, nursing homes, and so much more.
The elderly population and the ones with pre-existing or underlying conditions health conditions are considered the most at risk during this time. The policies and lockdowns that were put into place by community leaders to help keep people safe, but in turn they made navigating the process of guardianship all the more challenging.
To provide the best care for wards or the ones who can no longer care for themselves, guardianship was a complex balancing act before COVID-19. This pandemic has spurred many challenges for guardianship including virtual court hearings, nursing home lockdowns, and delayed medical examinations.
The following article expands more on some of the key guardianship challenges you will face during these times. Our law firm will help ensure you and your loved one move as quick as possible through the process, and we will ensure that it protects your loved one during this critical time.
Key Guardianship Challenges During COVID-19
Here are 4 of the key guardianship challenges people are facing in Florida during COVID-19. Our law firm is experienced at helping our clients navigate these challenges and we will ensure you get the assistance you need filing for guardianship and managing the responsibilities.
- The Florida Courts quickly adapted and moved to virtual hearings. On one hand, virtual hearings saved the courts money, time and reduced their impact on the environment. On the other hand, virtual hearings made it difficult for everyone else, especially when your loved one is incapacitated and unable to appear on a video call.
- With the exception of emergency cases when someone needs to have an involuntary commitment to an addiction center or mental institution, the Florida Courts are only open for in-person hearings on essential cases. Counties have differing processes for obtaining a guardianship, and guardianships are not considered essential cases.
- To determine what rights your loved one can no longer handle on their own, a physical exam and a mental health exam are still required. Some counties have completely stopped physical examinations, and mental health exams have become even more challenging as they consist of 3 members, two doctors and an expert, appointed by the Florida Courts.
- Guardians are often required to take a court-approved training program and some transactions may require court approvals. COVID-19 has delayed access to training programs, as well as court approvals for financial decisions.
DiFranza Law Can Help You Navigate Guardianship During COVID-19
When your loved is in need of a guardian, there are many ways we can assist you, including full guardianship, guardianship advocacy, advanced directives, trusts, and durable power of attorney. Navigating these options by yourself can be overwhelming, especially during COVID-19.
If you need help navigating the guardianship process or filing for guardianship during these challenging times, contact DiFranza Law today. Attorney Lisa DiFranza will work with you to determine the best way to help your loved one in the most effective and appropriate way possible.