|NT Guardianship Forms|
|Tuesday, 06 September 2011 10:46|
One of the major aims of the National Trust Act is to "lay down procedures for the appointment of Guardians and trustees for persons who require this protection."
This is a provision, which addresses a very urgent need of parents of persons with disabilities as Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities. Till this Act, there was no provision for guardianship for people with disabilities after they had reached the age of 18 except in very special circumstances. The National Trust Act, for the first time, gives this right to parents, or relatives, or registered organizations to ask for the appointment of guardian for the person with disabilities even after they are 18 years of age.
WHO IS A GUARDIAN?
All parents are the legal guardians of their children till the child attains 18 years of age. After that parents are no longer the legal guardians. This means that they cannot take any legal decisions on behalf of their child, or legally represent their child. The child is seen as having the ability to take those decisions by itself.
For example, when a child is below the age of 18, parents take most decisions for them. The parent would have the legal authority to decide what school the child attends, where to take the child for medical help, what kind of investments are to be made for the child etc. A child's signature would not be legally valid. However, once the child turns 18, legally, the child has become an adult and can take all these decisions by him or herself. The parent can no longer legally represent their child.
THE SPECIAL SITUATION OF PERSONS WITH, AUTISM, CEREBRAL PALSY, MENTAL RETARDATION AND MULTIPLE DISABILITIES
Before the National Trust Act, parents of such offsprings with named disability were not empowered to become the legal guardians of their children after they were 18 years of age. Parents had to approach the courts to get the guardianship of their child in special circumstances. On the other hand, the person with disability of the above mentioned categories might not be able to manage their personal requirements or take decisions for their betterment. In absence of continued and varied exposure to the society through early adulthood, the capacity of informed decision making may be somewhat underdeveloped. Therefore they require legal guardianship. The National Trust Act for the first time enables the person with above disabilities to have a guardian representing her/ him throughout their life.
NATURE OF GUARDIANSHIP
It is important to note that mental retardation can be an associated condition with Cerebral Palsy, Autism and other multiple disabilities. Persons with Cerebral Palsy, Autism and other multiple disabilities who have mental retardation will need legal guardians to represent them both for their person as well as their property.
Guardianship for person as well as property:
WHY SHOULD A PARENT GET LEGAL GUARDIANSHIP OF THEIR CHILD?
Then, what are the reasons that they should take legal guardianship?
Although, parents may take the full responsibility of looking after their child, even after the child is 18 years of age, they will need to legally represent their child as his or her guardian in many situations.
1. Guardianship may be needed for loans and concessions
For example, the National Handicapped Finance Development Cooperation has introduced an income generations scheme for the benefit of persons with mental retardation, cerebral palsy, autism and multiple disabilities. Since a large number of these persons may be unable to legally access this scheme on their own, the scheme can be accessed by parents. Parents would however need to have legal guardianship of their child.
2. Guardianship may be needed for managing investments
For opening and operating bank accounts in the child's name the parents would need to have the guardianship of their child.
Saurav is 16 year old child with Autism. His mother has opened a bank account in his name. Saurav feels very happy about the fact that there is a bank account in his name and that the money belongs to him.
However, when Saurav turns 18 his mother will not have the legal authority to operate the account since she will no longer be his legal guardian. She would need to get the legal guardianship of her child in order to operate the account
3. To safeguard the interests of your child
4. What will happen after me?
It is important to note that either parent can assume the guardianship of their child. Either the mother or the father can assume guardianship of the child. However it is always better to have joint guardianship.
In situations where parents are unable to look after their child, are physically incapacitated due to ill health etc they can nominate some other person to assume the guardianship of their child.
Relatives seeking guardianship
Incase parents are not there, or die suddenly and the child does not have a guardian, a relative can either seek guardianship himself/herself or ask the local level committee to appoint a guardian for the child.
Organizations seeking guardianship
This registered organization could be:
For the purpose of the act a 'registered organization' is one, which is registered with the National Trust. This means that all parent associations, organizations of persons with disability, and non-government organizations working with persons with disability have to register with the Trust if they want to obtain any benefits from the Trust.
In the case of an institution or organization being considered for appointments as a guardian the following guidelines would need to be followed:
? The institution should be recognized by the state or the central government.
PROCEDURE FOR GETTING GUARDIANSHIP
The other requirements are:
|Last Updated on Thursday, 02 February 2012 15:54|