Standby Guardianship - Arkansas

Date: June 2018

Who Can Nominate a Standby Guardian

Citation: Ann. Code § 28-65-221(a)

Any parent who is chronically ill or near death may have a standby guardian appointed by the court.

How to Establish a Standby Guardian

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 28-65-221(a); 28-65-204(b)(1)-(2)

The parent must use the same procedures outlined in the subchapter for establishing a guardianship.

The court shall appoint as guardian the person who is most suitable and is willing to serve, having due regard to:

  • Any request contained in a will or other written instrument executed by the parent
  • Any request for the appointment of a person as his or her guardian made by a minor age 14 or older

How Standby Authority is Activated

Citation: Ann. Code § 28-65-221(a)

The standby guardian's authority would take effect as outlined in an order of standby guardianship upon:

  • The death of the parent
  • The mental incapacity of the parent
  • The physical debilitation and consent of the parent

The standby guardian shall immediately notify the court upon the death, incapacity, or debilitation of the parent and shall immediately assume the role of guardian of the minor children. The court shall enter an order of guardianship in conformance with this section.

Involvement of the Noncustodial Parent

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Authority Relationship of the Parent and the Standby

Citation: Ann. Code § 28-65-221(a)

The parent does not surrender parental rights with the appointment of a standby guardian.

Withdrawing Guardianship

Citation: Ann. Code § 28-65-401

A guardianship is terminated by:

  • The death of the ward
  • The marriage of the ward
  • The ward reaching the age of majority, unless the guardian receives a guardianship subsidy from the Department of Human Services, then the guardianship is terminated when the ward either reaches age 21 or is age 18 or older and requests termination of the guardianship

A guardianship may be terminated by court order under any of the following circumstances:

  • If the guardianship was solely because of the ward's minority, and either the ward attains his or her majority or the disability of minority of the ward is removed for all purposes by a court of competent jurisdiction
  • If the ward becomes a nonresident of this State
  • If, for any other reason, the guardianship is no longer necessary and no longer in the best interests of the ward

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