Standby Guardianship - Colorado

Date: June 2018

Who Can Nominate a Standby Guardian

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 15-14-202

A guardian may be appointed in a will or another signed writing by a parent for any minor child the parent has. A guardian may also be appointed in a will or another signed writing by a guardian of a minor child. A guardian may not appoint a surviving parent who has no parental rights to be a successor guardian.

How to Establish a Standby Guardian

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 15-14-202

The appointment may specify the desired limitations on the powers to be given to the guardian.

Upon petition of an appointing parent or guardian and a finding that the appointing parent or guardian will likely become unable to care for the child within 2 years, the court, before the appointment becomes effective, may confirm the selection of a guardian by a parent or guardian and terminate the rights of others to object. If the child is age 12 or older, he or she must consent to the appointment of a guardian.

How Standby Authority is Activated

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 15-14-202

Subject to § 15-14-203, the appointment of a guardian becomes effective upon the death of the appointing parent or guardian, an adjudication that the parent or guardian is an incapacitated person, or a written determination by a physician who has examined the parent or guardian that the parent or guardian is no longer able to care for the child, whichever occurs first.

The guardian becomes eligible to act upon the filing of an acceptance of appointment, which must be filed within 30 days after the guardian's appointment becomes effective. Unless the appointment was previously confirmed by the court, within 30 days after filing the notice and the appointing instrument, a guardian shall petition the court for confirmation of the appointment.

Involvement of the Noncustodial Parent

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 15-14-203; 15-14-204; 15-14-205

Until the court has confirmed an appointee, the other parent may prevent or terminate the appointment at any time by filing a written objection with the court.

Consent is required unless either the parent's parental rights have been terminated or the parent is unwilling or unable to exercise such rights.

After a petition for appointment of a guardian is filed, the court shall schedule a hearing. Notice of the hearing and a copy of the petition must be given to the noncustodial parent.

Authority Relationship of the Parent and the Standby

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 15-14-202

The appointment of a guardian by a parent does not supersede the parental rights of either parent.

Withdrawing Guardianship

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 15-14-202; 15-14-210

The appointing parent or guardian may revoke or amend the appointment at any time before it is confirmed by the court. The authority of the guardian terminates upon the appointment of another guardian by the court, the filing of an objection by another person, or the refusal of the minor age 12 or older to consent.

The guardianship terminates upon a minor's death, adoption, emancipation, or attainment of majority, or as ordered by the court.

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